Special Issue Editor
Interests: molecular evolution; biodiversity; phylogeny; phylogeography; genome; mammals; bats; reservoir hosts; coevolution; ecology
Special Issue Information
Coronaviruses are enveloped viruses with a positive-sense single-stranded RNA genome of about 25–32 kb that are currently classified into four genera within the subfamily Coronavirinae (Alphacoronavirus, Betacoronavirus, Deltacoronavirus, and Gammacoronavirus). In mammals and birds they can cause respiratory tract infections, as well as liver, intestinal tract, and brain infections. In humans they include some cases of the common cold, as well as emerging pathogens involved in the SARS, MERS, and COVID-19 epidemics. Bats and birds are the natural reservoirs of most coronaviruses. With the development of metagenomic studies, more and more new coronaviruses are described, particularly in tropical regions, where the species diversity of their natural reservoirs is much more important than in temperate regions. Understanding the origin and evolution of coronaviruses through phylogenetic and molecular dating analyses remains, however, challenging due to their variable rates of nucleotide substitutions and genome recombination, as well as their high capacity for interspecies transmission (host jump).
The purpose of this Special Issue is to bring together a series of original research and review articles related to the evolution of coronavirus genomes. Areas of interest include, but are not limited to, the following topics: evolution of recombination, impact of recombination on phylogenetic inferences, characterization of recombinant genomes (including those identified between SARS-CoV-2 lineages), description of new animal coronaviruses, and the spatial and temporal evolution of coronaviruses.
Dr. Alexandre Hassanin