Viral evolution

Viral evolution refers to the heritable genetic changes that a virus accumulates during its life time, which can arise from adaptations in response to environmental changes or the immune response of the host. Because of their short generation times and large population sizes, viruses can evolve rapidly.

Latest Research and Reviews

News and Comment

  • Comments & Opinion |

    How viruses are related, and how they have evolved and spread over time, can be investigated using phylogenetics. Here, we set out how genomic analyses should be used during an epidemic and propose that phylogenetic insights from the early stages of an outbreak should heed all of the available epidemiological information.

    • Ch. Julián Villabona-Arenas
    • , William P. Hanage
    •  & Damien C. Tully
    Nature Microbiology 5, 876-877
  • Editorial |

    Long-known to happen in other realms of the microscopic and macroscopic worlds, social interactions in viruses are increasingly being appreciated and have the potential to influence many processes, including viral pathogenesis, resistance to antiviral immunity, establishment of persistence and even life cycle choice.

  • News & Views |

    A recent study finds that viruses cooperate altruistically to overcome innate host immunity and that this can be explained in the same way we explain altruism between animals.

    • Asher Leeks
    •  & Stuart West
    Nature Microbiology 4, 910-911