Special Issue "Viral and Host Factors Driving the Emergence and the Evolution of the SARS-CoV-2 and Other Coronaviruses"

A special issue of Viruses (ISSN 1999-4915). This special issue belongs to the section "SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 April 2022.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Corinne Ronfort
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
1. Animal Health Dept. UMR IVPC, University of Lyon I, French National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food and Environment, 69007 Lyon, France
2. AIOVA sas, University of Grenoble, 570 rue de la Chimie, 38300 Saint Martin d’Hèyres, France
Interests: infectiology; molecular and cellular biology; virology; emerging and re-emerging viral infections; vaccines; SARS-CoV; retro- and lentiviruses; influenza; gene therapy; gene transfer vectors

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Eighteen months ago, humanity was facing the emergence of the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the causative agent of the COVID-19 pandemic. This emergence, from an animal reservoir, is the third in just two decades after the SARS-CoV-1 in 2002 and the MERS in 2012. Thus, new SARS pandemics are likely to occur in the future.

SARS viruses undergo continuous genetic changes. Thousands of SARS-CoV-2 variants have been detected by laboratory screening. Four of them (from United Kingdom, South Africa, Brazil and India) that may have enhanced transmission and pathogenicity are emerging and are of great concern. Regarding the vaccines authorized to date for an emergency use, there is also concern about the reduction in vaccine-induced immune protection to emerging variants.

The complex questions to explore are : (i) what makes a SARS virus transmissible from one species to another, and (ii) which factors drive mutation, evolution and emergence of SARS. Understanding these questions will provide us with better tools to controlling COVID.

The aim of this special issue is to provide data on the viral, cellular and host factors involved in the emergence and evolution of the SARS viruses. Several factors are in question such as the viral dynamic, the RNA nature of the virus - ability to mutate, the role of co-infections and recombinations -, host and cellular restriction factors as well as host immunity and immune escape.

Papers focusing on animal coronaviruses that may be relevant to SARS-CoV-2 are welcome.

Dr. Corinne Ronfort
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Viruses is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • COVID-19
  • SARS-CoV-2, SARS, MERS
  • biology of SARS CoV-2 and other coronaviruses
  • emergence
  • viral evolution, variants
  • host factors
  • innate and adaptive immunity
  • crossing of the species barrier

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

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Article
Mutation in a SARS-CoV-2 Haplotype from Sub-Antarctic Chile Reveals New Insights into the Spike’s Dynamics
Viruses 2021, 13(5), 883; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/v13050883 - 11 May 2021
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Abstract
The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 variants, as observed with the D614G spike protein mutant and, more recently, with B.1.1.7 (501Y.V1), B.1.351 (501Y.V2) and B.1.1.28.1 (P.1) lineages, represent a continuous threat and might lead to strains of higher infectivity and/or virulence. We report on the [...] Read more.
The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 variants, as observed with the D614G spike protein mutant and, more recently, with B.1.1.7 (501Y.V1), B.1.351 (501Y.V2) and B.1.1.28.1 (P.1) lineages, represent a continuous threat and might lead to strains of higher infectivity and/or virulence. We report on the occurrence of a SARS-CoV-2 haplotype with nine mutations including D614G/T307I double-mutation of the spike. This variant expanded and completely replaced previous lineages within a short period in the subantarctic Magallanes Region, southern Chile. The rapid lineage shift was accompanied by a significant increase of cases, resulting in one of the highest incidence rates worldwide. Comparative coarse-grained molecular dynamic simulations indicated that T307I and D614G belong to a previously unrecognized dynamic domain, interfering with the mobility of the receptor binding domain of the spike. The T307I mutation showed a synergistic effect with the D614G. Continuous surveillance of new mutations and molecular analyses of such variations are important tools to understand the molecular mechanisms defining infectivity and virulence of current and future SARS-CoV-2 strains. Full article
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Review

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Review
Evolutionary Dynamics and Epidemiology of Endemic and Emerging Coronaviruses in Humans, Domestic Animals, and Wildlife
Viruses 2021, 13(10), 1908; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/v13101908 - 23 Sep 2021
Viewed by 698
Abstract
Diverse coronavirus (CoV) strains can infect both humans and animals and produce various diseases. CoVs have caused three epidemics and pandemics in the last two decades, and caused a severe impact on public health and the global economy. Therefore, it is of utmost [...] Read more.
Diverse coronavirus (CoV) strains can infect both humans and animals and produce various diseases. CoVs have caused three epidemics and pandemics in the last two decades, and caused a severe impact on public health and the global economy. Therefore, it is of utmost importance to understand the emergence and evolution of endemic and emerging CoV diversity in humans and animals. For diverse bird species, the Infectious Bronchitis Virus is a significant one, whereas feline enteric and canine coronavirus, recombined to produce feline infectious peritonitis virus, infects wild cats. Bovine and canine CoVs have ancestral relationships, while porcine CoVs, especially SADS-CoV, can cross species barriers. Bats are considered as the natural host of diverse strains of alpha and beta coronaviruses. Though MERS-CoV is significant for both camels and humans, humans are nonetheless affected more severely. MERS-CoV cases have been reported mainly in the Arabic peninsula since 2012. To date, seven CoV strains have infected humans, all descended from animals. The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronaviruses (SARS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2) are presumed to be originated in Rhinolopoid bats that severely infect humans with spillover to multiple domestic and wild animals. Emerging alpha and delta variants of SARS-CoV-2 were detected in pets and wild animals. Still, the intermediate hosts and all susceptible animal species remain unknown. SARS-CoV-2 might not be the last CoV to cross the species barrier. Hence, we recommend developing a universal CoV vaccine for humans so that any future outbreak can be prevented effectively. Furthermore, a One Health approach coronavirus surveillance should be implemented at human-animal interfaces to detect novel coronaviruses before emerging to humans and to prevent future epidemics and pandemics. Full article
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