Science and Technology
publicado em 11/10/2013 às 19h34:00
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Australians discover the source of the virus Mers-CoV

Second study, the virus has undergone a long period of evolution in bats before infecting humans

 
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The virus that causes respiratory syndrome coronavirus in the Middle East (Mers-CoV) circulated among bats long before reaching humans. By analyzing the genomes of several bat species, the scientists show that genes DPP4 conducted a long-term arms race between the bat and the virus.

Previous work has shown that Mers-CoV uses DPP4 receptor to enter the cell, leaving footprints in evolutionary genes encoding the host receptor and its binding domains during long battles with the hosts. Cui Jie, University of Sydney analyzed the sequence of DPP4 seven genomes bat. Then compared the results with a range of non-mammalian species bat. They were able to identify three residues in bats DPP4 genes that interact directly with the viral surface glycoprotein.

Their results show more pressure on the genes of bats than in other species, with mutations occurring at a faster rate, suggesting that the newly emerged Mers-CoV not only stems from the bat, but also evolved over a period of time in bat populations before making the jump to infect humans. Now scientists conduct research to understand the route of transmission.

According to the investigator, "Our analysis suggests that evolutionary lineage result of a long period of evolution in bats just beyond the limits to the species infecting humans, perhaps via an intermediate host, still unknown.

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Mers-CoV Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus Middle Eastern coronaviruses    DPP4    DPP4 genes    Cui Jie    University of Sydney    health   
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