Morphologic and Genomic Analyses of New Isolates Reveal a Second Lineage of Cedratviruses.J Virol. 2018 07 01; 92(13)JV
Giant viruses have been isolated and characterized in different environments, expanding our knowledge about the biology of these unique microorganisms. In the last 2 years, a new group was discovered, the cedratviruses, currently composed of only two isolates and members of a putative new family, "Pithoviridae," along with previously known pithoviruses. Here we report the isolation and biological and genomic characterization of two novel cedratviruses isolated from samples collected in France and Brazil. Both viruses were isolated using Acanthamoeba castellanii as a host cell and exhibit ovoid particles with corks at either extremity of the particle. Curiously, the Brazilian cedratvirus is ∼20% smaller and presents a shorter genome of 460,038 bp, coding for fewer proteins than other cedratviruses. In addition, it has a completely asyntenic genome and presents a lower amino acid identity of orthologous genes (∼73%). Pangenome analysis comprising the four cedratviruses revealed an increase in the pangenome concomitant with a decrease in the core genome with the addition of the two novel viruses. Finally, phylogenetic analyses clustered the Brazilian virus in a separate branch within the group of cedratviruses, while the French isolate is closer to the previously reported Cedratvirus lausannensis Taking all together, we propose the existence of a second lineage of this emerging viral genus and provide new insights into the biodiversity and ubiquity of these giant viruses.IMPORTANCE Various giant viruses have been described in recent years, revealing a unique part of the virosphere. A new group among the giant viruses has recently been described, the cedratviruses, which is currently composed of only two isolates. In this paper, we describe two novel cedratviruses isolated from French and Brazilian samples. Biological and genomic analyses showed viruses with different particle sizes, genome lengths, and architecture, revealing the existence of a second lineage of this new group of giant viruses. Our results provide new insights into the biodiversity of cedratviruses and highlight the importance of ongoing efforts to prospect for and characterize new giant viruses.