Ratio between mutation rate in RNA viruses and in vertebrate species

Value 1e+6 Unitless
Organism Various
Reference Bedford T, Cobey S, Pascual M. Strength and tempo of selection revealed in viral gene genealogies. BMC Evol Biol. 2011 Jul 25 11(1):220 doi:10.1186/1471-2148-11-220 p.1 left columnPubMed ID21787390
Primary Source [1] Duffy S, Shackelton LA, Holmes EC. Rates of evolutionary change in viruses: patterns and determinants. Nat Rev Genet. 2008 Apr9(4):267-76PubMed ID18319742
Comments P.1 left column: "RNA viruses evolve extremely rapidly, often with mutation rates one million times greater than vertebrate species [primary source]. This rate of mutation allows viral populations to keep pace with rapidly changing environments. Viral pathogens, such as influenza virus, HIV, hepatitis C virus and measles virus, place a substantial burden on global human health. Often, after encountering a particular viral strain, an individual develops long-lasting immunity specific to this strain. However, in some viruses, mutations to the virus genome may result in proteins that are recognized to a lesser degree by the human immune system, leaving individuals susceptible to future infection. These mutations rapidly spread through the virus population in a process known as antigenic drift. The capacity for rapid evolutionary change allows the virus population to flourish, despite substantial immune pressure."
Entered by Uri M
ID 106588