Rate of nucleotide substitution

Value 1.7E-08 substitution/site/year
Organism Spumavirus simian foamy virus (SFV)
Reference Duffy S, Shackelton LA, Holmes EC. Rates of evolutionary change in viruses: patterns and determinants. Nat Rev Genet. 2008 Apr9(4):267-76 p.271 right column top paragraphPubMed ID18319742
Primary Source [41] Switzer, W. M. et al. Ancient co-speciation of simian foamy viruses and primates. Nature 434, 376–380 (2005). DOI: 10.1038/nature03341PubMed ID15772660
Method Primary source abstract: "Here [investigators] test the co-speciation hypothesis in SFVs and their primate hosts by comparing the phylogenies of SFV polymerase and mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase subunit II from African and Asian monkeys and apes."
Comments P.271 right column top paragraph: "Some RNA viruses evolve slowly. Importantly, a small number of RNA viruses experience anomalously low rates of nucleotide substitution. The best documented of these is the retrovirus simian foamy virus (SFV)(primary source). Phylogenetic studies have revealed that the phylogeny of SFVs is largely congruent with that of its primate hosts. This widespread congruence allows rates of viral evolution to be estimated through calibration with the primate fossil record, resulting in values of only 1.7×10^−8 subs/site/year(primary source). However, genetic diversity has been observed among SFV isolates sampled within individual primates (primary source), indicating that the SFV RT (reverse transcriptase) has not evolved additional mechanisms of error correction. Consequently, the most likely explanation for the reduced substitution rates seen in SFV is that the virus is largely latent within hosts, primarily undergoing replication as integrated dsDNA within primate genomes."
Entered by Uri M
ID 112773