Rodents have long been recognized as the principal reservoirs of hantaviruses. However, with the discovery of genetically distinct and phylogenetically divergent lineages of hantaviruses in multiple species of shrews, moles, and insectivorous bats from widely separated geographic regions, a far more complex landscape of hantavirus host distribution, evolution, and phylogeography is emerging. Detailed phylogenetic analyses, based on partial and full-length genomes of previously described rodent-borne hantaviruses and newly detected non-rodent-borne hantaviruses, indicate an Asian origin and support the emerging concept that ancestral non-rodent mammals may have served as the hosts of primordial hantaviruses.
Keywords: Chiroptera; Eulipotyphla; evolution; hantavirus; host-switching.
Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier Ltd.