Family: Plectroviridae

Genus: Vespertiliovirus


Distinguishing features

The isolation hosts of phages in the genus Vespertiliovirus are members of the bacterial genus Spiroplasma: S. citri for Spiroplasma phage 1-R8A2B and Spiroplasma phage 1-C74 (sometimes denoted as SpV1), and S. kunkelii for Spiroplasma phage SkV1CR23x. Phages in the genus are rod-shaped viruses 230–280 nm long and 10–15 nm in diameter. Genome length is 7.8−8.4 kb (22−23 G+C) with 11−12 encoded proteins. The phages are integrative, possess their own transposase (Renaudin et al., 1990, Bébéar et al., 1996) and replicate by transposition. The phage Spiroplasma phage SVTS2 (genus Suturavirus) that infects Spiroplasma melliferum shows very low DNA similarity (identity × query coverage) to members of the genus Verspertiliovirus while sharing 33% of its predicted protein content. 


See discussion under family description

Genome organisation and replication

See discussion under family description


Members of the genus infect members of the genus Spiroplasma 

Species demarcation criteria

Phages of the same species share >95% DNA sequence similarity (identity × query coverage) and significant amino-acid sequence similarity of adhesion protein (CoaA).