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Virus classification
Group: Group I (dsDNA)
Family: Marseilleviridae


Marseilleviridae is a family of double stranded DNA viruses. It is a member of the nucleocytoplasmic large DNA viruses clade.


One of the first members of this family was described in 2009.[1] Other members described around then (2007) and since then have been documented.[2]


There is one genus (Marseillevirus) in this family and one species within this genus currently recognised. It was originally grouped with the Mimivirus but subsequent studies showed it to be only distantly related.

Additional species have since been recognised.[3] The first member of this family recognised has been named Acanthamoeba polyphaga marseillevirus. A second member is Acanthamoeba castellanii lausannevirus. Two additional viruses have been isolated but have yet to be named. Another member of this family has been isolated from blood donors.[4] An isolate from insects – Insectomime virus – has also been reported.[5]

The viruses appear to fall into at least 3 lineages: (1) Marseillevirus and Cannes8virus (2) nsectomime and Tunisvirus and (3) Lausannevirus. A sixth member of this family - Melbournevirus - appears to be related to the Melbournevirus/Cannes8virus clade.[6]


  1. ^ Boyer M, Yutin N, Pagnier I, Barrassi L, Fournous G, Espinosa L, Robert C, Azza S, Sun S, Rossmann MG, Suzan-Monti M, La Scola B, Koonin EV, Raoult D. (2009) Giant Marseillevirus highlights the role of amoebae as a melting pot in emergence of chimeric microorganisms. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 106:21848-21853. doi: 10.1073/pnas.0911354106. PubMed PMID 20007369
  2. ^ Aherfi S, La Scola B, Pagnier I, Raoult D, Colson P. (2014) The expanding family Marseilleviridae. Virology. pii: S0042-6822(14)00320-00321. doi:10.1016/j.virol.2014.07.014. PubMed PMID 25104553
  3. ^ Colson P, Pagnier I, Yoosuf N, Fournous G, La Scola B, Raoult D (2012) "Marseilleviridae", a new family of giant viruses infecting amoebae. Arch Virol
  4. ^ Popgeorgiev N, Boyer M, Fancello L, Monteil S, Robert C, Rivet R, Nappez C, Azza S, Chiaroni J, Raoult D, Desnues C (2013) Giant blood Marseillevirus recovered from asymptomatic blood donors. J Infect Dis
  5. ^ Boughalmi M, Pagnier I, Aherfi S, Colson P, Raoult D, La Scola B. First isolation of a Marseillevirus in the Diptera Syrphidae Eristalis tenax. Intervirology 56(6):386-394 doi:10.1159/000354560
  6. ^ Doutre G, Philippe N, Abergel C, Claverie JM (2014) Genome analysis of the first Marseilleviridae representative from Australia indicates that most of its genes contribute to the virus fitness. J Virol pii: JVI.02414-14