DNA viruses comprise a wide array of genome structures and infect diverse host species. To date, most studies of DNA viruses have focused on those with the strongest disease associations. Accordingly, there has been a marked lack of sampling of DNA viruses from invertebrates. Bulk RNA sequencing has resulted in the discovery of a myriad of novel RNA viruses, and herein we used this methodology to identify actively transcribing DNA viruses in meta-transcriptomic libraries of diverse invertebrate species. Our analysis revealed high levels of phylogenetic diversity in DNA viruses, including 13 species from the Parvoviridae, Circoviridae
, and Genomoviridae
families of single-stranded DNA virus families, and six double-stranded DNA virus species from the Nudiviridae
, and Herpesviridae
, for which few invertebrate viruses have been identified to date. By incorporating the sequence of a “blank” experimental control we also highlight the importance of reagent contamination in metagenomic studies. In sum, this work expands our knowledge of the diversity and evolution of DNA viruses and illustrates the utility of meta-transcriptomic data in identifying organisms with DNA genomes.
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