Population dynamics of RNA viruses: the essential contribution of mutant spectra

  • E. Domingo
  • C. Gonzalez-Lopez
  • N. Pariente
  • A. Airaksinen
  • C. Escarmís
Conference paper


Cells and their viral and cellular parasites are genetically highly diverse, and their genomes contain signs of past and present variation and mobility. The great adaptive potential of viruses, conferred on them by high mutation rates and quasispecies dynamics, demands new strategies for viral disease prevention and control. This necessitates a more detailed knowledge of viral population structure and dynamics. Here we review studies with the important animal pathogen Foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV) that document modulating effects of the mutant spectra that compose viral populations. As a consequence of interactions within mutant spectra, enhanced mutagenesis may lead to viral extinction, and this is currently investigated as a new antiviral strategy, termed virus entry into error catastrophe.


Mutagenic Agent Viral Population Mutant Spectrum Error Threshold Antiviral Strategy 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag/Wien 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • E. Domingo
    • 1
    • 2
  • C. Gonzalez-Lopez
    • 1
  • N. Pariente
    • 1
  • A. Airaksinen
    • 1
  • C. Escarmís
    • 1
  1. 1.Centro de Biología Molecular “Severo Ochoa” (CSIC-UAM)Universidad Autónoma de MadridCantoblanco, MadridSpain
  2. 2.Centro de Investigación en Sanidad Animal (CISA-INIA)Universidad Autónoma de MadridCantoblanco, MadridSpain

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