© 1992

Genetic Diversity of RNA Viruses

  • John J. Holland

Part of the Current Topics in Microbiology and Immunology book series (CT MICROBIOLOGY, volume 176)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages I-IX
  2. J. J. Holland, J. C. De La Torre, D. A. Steinhauer
    Pages 1-20
  3. M. M. C. Lai
    Pages 21-32
  4. E. Domingo, C. Escarmis, M. A. Martinez, E. Martinez-Salas, M. G. Mateu
    Pages 33-47
  5. L. Kinnunen, T. Pöyry, T. Hovi
    Pages 49-61
  6. S. C. Weaver, R. Rico-Hesse, T. W. Scott
    Pages 99-117
  7. R. F. Doolittle, D.-F. Feng
    Pages 195-211
  8. Back Matter
    Pages 221-228

About this book


Many RNA viruses have been known for decades to be genetically and biologically quite variable. Some well-known examples are influenza viruses, foot and mouth disease viruses, and Newcastle disease virus. During the past decade, it has become clear that most, it not all. , RNA viruses (riboviruses and retroviruses) are much more mutable than was recognized previously, and that this great mutability generates extremely complex populations consisting of indeterminate mixtures of related variants (Le. , "mutant swarms" or "quasispecies" populations). This is also true of DNA viruses (such as hepatitis DNA genomes via RNA transcripts B virus) which replicate their that are reverse-transcribed back to DNA. This hypermutability of RNA replicons provides great biological adaptability for RNA virus genomes. It also allows (but does not necessitate) RNA viruses, so that they can extremely rapid evolution of evolve over a million times more quickly than their eukaryotic DNA-based hosts. The genetics of RNA replicons is so unusual (and often counterintuitive) that it has many important biological conse­ quences which are neither readily apparent nor widely under­ stood. Failure to understand the distinctive aspects of RNA genetics frequently generates confusion and controversy and can adversely impact vaccine and antiviral drug programs and other applications of medical virology. The 14 chapters in this volume describe advances in a number of significant areas of RNA virus genetics and evolution.


AIDS Antigen Evolution Mutation RNA-Viren Riboviruses Virologie Viruses antiviral drug resistance retroviruses virology

Editors and affiliations

  • John J. Holland
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biology, C-016University of CaliforniaSan Diego, La JollaUSA

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Genetic Diversity of RNA Viruses
  • Editors John J. Holland
  • Series Title Current Topics in Microbiology and Immunology
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1992
  • Publisher Name Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-3-540-54652-8
  • Softcover ISBN 978-3-642-77013-5
  • eBook ISBN 978-3-642-77011-1
  • Series ISSN 0070-217X
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages X, 226
  • Number of Illustrations 0 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Virology
    Medical Microbiology
    Cell Biology
  • Buy this book on publisher's site
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