Toward a quantitative understanding of viral phylogeography

Curr Opin Virol. 2011 Nov;1(5):423-9. doi: 10.1016/j.coviro.2011.10.003. Epub 2011 Oct 28.


Phylogeographic approaches help uncover the imprint that spatial epidemiological processes leave in the genomes of fast evolving viruses. Recent Bayesian inference methods that consider phylogenetic diffusion of discretely and continuously distributed traits offer a unique opportunity to explore genotypic and phenotypic evolution in greater detail. To provide a taste of the recent advances in viral diffusion approaches, we highlight key findings arising at the intrahost, local and global epidemiological scales. We also outline future areas of research and discuss how these may contribute to a quantitative understanding of the phylodynamics of RNA viruses.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Phylogeny
  • Phylogeography*
  • RNA Viruses / classification
  • RNA Viruses / genetics*
  • RNA Viruses / isolation & purification
  • Virus Diseases / epidemiology
  • Virus Diseases / virology*