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Viruses 2014, 6(4), 1564-1577; doi:10.3390/v6041564
Review

Poxviruses in Bats … so What?

1,*  and 2,*
1 Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, Hinxton, CB10 1SA, UK 2 University of Glasgow Centre for Virus Research, Institute of Infection, Inflammation and Immunity, College of Medical, Veterinary and Life Sciences, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, G61 1QH, UK
* Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 28 January 2014 / Revised: 13 March 2014 / Accepted: 17 March 2014 / Published: 3 April 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Viruses and Bats)
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Abstract

Poxviruses are important pathogens of man and numerous domestic and wild animal species. Cross species (including zoonotic) poxvirus infections can have drastic consequences for the recipient host. Bats are a diverse order of mammals known to carry lethal viral zoonoses such as Rabies, Hendra, Nipah, and SARS. Consequent targeted research is revealing bats to be infected with a rich diversity of novel viruses. Poxviruses were recently identified in bats and the settings in which they were found were dramatically different. Here, we review the natural history of poxviruses in bats and highlight the relationship of the viruses to each other and their context in the Poxviridae family. In addition to considering the zoonotic potential of these viruses, we reflect on the broader implications of these findings. Specifically, the potential to explore and exploit this newfound relationship to study coevolution and cross species transmission together with fundamental aspects of poxvirus host tropism as well as bat virology and immunology.
Keywords: bats; poxviruses; host-range; emergence bats; poxviruses; host-range; emergence
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Baker, K.S.; Murcia, P.R. Poxviruses in Bats … so What? Viruses 2014, 6, 1564-1577.

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