Expanding the Arterivirus Host Spectrum: Olivier's Shrew Virus 1, A Novel Arterivirus Discovered in African Giant Shrews.
Vanmechelen B., Vergote V., Laenen L., Koundouno FR., Bore JA., Wada J., Kuhn JH., Carroll MW., Maes P.
The family Arteriviridae harbors a rapidly expanding group of viruses known to infect a divergent group of mammals, including horses, pigs, possums, primates, and rodents. Hosts infected with arteriviruses present with a wide variety of (sub) clinical symptoms, depending on the virus causing the infection and the host being infected. In this study, we determined the complete genome sequences of three variants of a previously unknown virus found in Olivier's shrews (Crocidura olivieri guineensis) sampled in Guinea. On the nucleotide level, the three genomes of this new virus, named Olivier's shrew virus 1 (OSV-1), are 88-89% similar. The genome organization of OSV-1 is characteristic of all known arteriviruses, yet phylogenetic analysis groups OSV-1 separately from all currently established arterivirus lineages. Therefore, we postulate that OSV-1 represents a member of a novel arterivirus genus. The virus described here represents the first discovery of an arterivirus in members of the order Eulipotyphla, thereby greatly expanding the known host spectrum of arteriviruses.