Phylogenetic analysis of the full-length SARS-CoV sequences: evidence for phylogenetic discordance in three genomic regions

J Med Virol. 2004 Nov;74(3):369-72. doi: 10.1002/jmv.20187.


The origin of the severe acute respiratory syndrome-coronavirus (SARS-CoV) remains unclear. Evidence based on Bayesian scanning plots and phylogenetic analysis using maximum likelihood (ML) and Bayesian methods indicates that SARS-CoV, for the largest part of the genome ( approximately 80%), is more closely related to Group II coronaviruses sequences, whereas in three regions in the ORF1ab gene it shows no apparent similarity to any of the previously characterized groups of coronaviruses. There is discordant phylogenetic clustering of SARS-CoV and coronaviruses sequences, throughout the genome, compatible with either ancient recombination events or altered evolutionary rates in different lineages, or a combination of both.

MeSH terms

  • Evolution, Molecular
  • Genome, Viral
  • Humans
  • Phylogeny
  • Recombination, Genetic
  • SARS Virus / classification*
  • SARS Virus / genetics*
  • Sequence Alignment
  • Viral Proteins / genetics


  • Viral Proteins