Genomic and phylogenetic characterization of Merino Walk virus, a novel arenavirus isolated in South Africa

Palacios, Gustavo F.; Savji, Nazir; Hui, Jeffrey; Da Rosa, Amelia Travassos; Popov, Vsevolod; Briese, Thomas; Tesh, Robert; Lipkin, W. Ian

Merino Walk virus (MWV), a proposed novel tentative species of the family Arenaviridae, was isolated from a rodent, Myotomys unisulcatus, collected at Merino Walk, Eastern Cape, South Africa, in 1985. Full-length genomic sequence confirmed MWV as an arenavirus related distantly to Mobala, Mopeia and Ippy viruses, all members of the Old World arenavirus complex. We propose MWV as a tentative novel species in the Lassa–lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus complex, based on its isolation from a novel rodent species and its genetic and serological characteristics.

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Journal of General Virology

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Academic Units
Center for Infection and Immunity
Published Here
February 26, 2013