Perspectives on binomial names of virus species

Perspectives on binomial names of virus species Arch Virol 146/8 (2001) Virology Division News M. H. V. Van Regenmortel École Supérieure de Biotechnologie de Strasbourg, Illkirch, France In recent years, the ICTV has been criticized [3, 4, 6] for its unwillingness to turn the unofficial binomial names of plant virus species used by many plant virologists into official names. It seems timely, therefore, to spell out the implications of such a binomial system if it were used for all the official species names that appeared in the 7th ICTV Report [11]. Only if this is done, will it be possible for virologists to assess both the advantages and disadvantages of a binomial system. It is hoped that the present note will elicit many responses from individual virologists. In the proposed binomial system, the word virus appearing at the end of the current official species name is replaced by the genus name, which also ends in «-virus». For example, Tobacco mosaic virus becomes Tobacco mosaic tobamovirus Plumpox virus becomes Plumpox potyvirus Rice dwarf virus becomes Rice dwarf phytoreovirus Potato virus X becomes Potato X potexvirus The obvious advantage of such a system is that inclusion of the genus name in the species name indicates relationships with other Archives of Virology Springer Journals

Perspectives on binomial names of virus species

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