Subfamily: Gammaherpesvirinae

Genus: Lymphocryptovirus

 

Distinguishing features

The predicted amino acid sequences of members form a distinct lineage within the subfamily (Figure 1. Gammaherpesvirinae). 

Virion

See discussion under family description

Genome organization and replication

Well-characterised members (e.g. Epstein-Barr virus [EBV] in the species Human gammaherpesvirus 4) have a prominent series of direct repeats located internally within the genome. 

Biology

Members have primates as hosts. EBV can infect B lymphocytes in culture, but infection is usually non-productive and can result in immortalization (Nilsson et al., 1971). EBV commonly causes glandular fever (infectious mononucleosis). B cells or their precursors are thought to be the site of latent infection in vivo (Arvin et al., 2007). 

Species demarcation criteria

See discussion under family description