The family Baculoviridae represents one of the largest and most diverse groups of viruses and a unique model for studying the forces driving the evolution and biodiversity of double-stranded DNA viruses with large genomes. With the advent of comparative genomics, the phylogenetic relationships of baculoviruses have been put on solid bases. This, as well as improved bioinformatic approaches, has provided a detailed picture of baculovirus phylogeny and evolution. According to the present knowledge, baculoviruses can be classified into at least four evolutionary lineages: the most ancestral dipteran nucleopolyhedroviruses, the hymenopteran nucleopolyhedroviruses and the lepidopteran nucleopolyhedroviruses and granuloviruses. Despite the growing understanding of baculovirus phylogeny and macro-evolution, our knowledge of the micro – evolutionary processes within baculovirus species and virus populations is still limited. Here we present the state of the art on baculovirus phylogeny and evolution.
Keywords: Baculoviridae, Nucleopolyhedrovirus, Granulovirus, Insect, DNA Virus, Genome Phylogeny, Evolution, Ecology
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