A suggested new bacteriophage genus: "Viunalikevirus"

Arch Virol. 2012 Oct;157(10):2035-46. doi: 10.1007/s00705-012-1360-5. Epub 2012 Jun 17.


We suggest a bacteriophage genus, "Viunalikevirus", as a new genus within the family Myoviridae. To date, this genus includes seven sequenced members: Salmonella phages ViI, SFP10 and ΦSH19; Escherichia phages CBA120 and PhaxI; Shigella phage phiSboM-AG3; and Dickeya phage LIMEstone1. Their shared myovirus morphology, with comparable head sizes and tail dimensions, and genome organization are considered distinguishing features. They appear to have conserved regulatory sequences, a horizontally acquired tRNA set and the probable substitution of an alternate base for thymine in the DNA. A close examination of the tail spike region in the DNA revealed four distinct tail spike proteins, an arrangement which might lead to the umbrella-like structures of the tails visible on electron micrographs. These properties set the suggested genus apart from the recently ratified subfamily Tevenvirinae, although a significant evolutionary relationship can be observed.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Bacteriophages / classification*
  • Bacteriophages / genetics*
  • Bacteriophages / ultrastructure
  • Coliphages / classification
  • Coliphages / genetics
  • Coliphages / ultrastructure
  • Genome, Viral
  • Myoviridae / classification*
  • Myoviridae / genetics*
  • Myoviridae / ultrastructure
  • Phylogeny
  • Salmonella Phages / classification
  • Salmonella Phages / genetics
  • Salmonella Phages / ultrastructure
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA
  • Species Specificity
  • Viral Proteins / chemistry
  • Viral Proteins / genetics
  • Viral Tail Proteins / chemistry
  • Viral Tail Proteins / genetics


  • Viral Proteins
  • Viral Tail Proteins
  • tailspike protein, bacteriophage