Discovery of a novel circular DNA virus in the Forbes sea star, Asterias forbesi
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A single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) virus, Asterias forbesi-associated circular virus (AfaCV), was discovered in a Forbes sea star displaying symptoms of sea star wasting disease (SSWD). The AfaCV genome organization is typical of circular Rep-encoding ssDNA (CRESS-DNA) viruses and is similar to that of members of the family Circoviridae. PCR-based surveys indicate that AfaCV is not clearly associated with SSWD, whereas the sea star-associated densovirus (SSaDV), recently implicated in SSWD in the Pacific, was prevalent in symptomatic specimens. AfaCV represents the first CRESS-DNA virus detected in echinoderms, adding to the growing diversity of these viruses recently recovered from invertebrates.
KeywordsWhole Genome Amplification Viral Metagenomics Keystone Predator Major Open Reading Frame Viral Contigs
This work was funded through grant DEB-1239976 from the National Science Foundation’s Assembling the Tree of Life Program to K.R and M.B. EF is funded by the Sanibel-Captiva Shell Club and Mary and Al Bridell Memorial Fellowship. This manuscript constitutes Sea Research Foundation publication #256.
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