Virus identification resources

In the absence of laboratory diagnostic techniques it is usually difficult if not impossible to identify a virus-like disease to species-rank. Ideally, identification of a virus-like disease would begin with identification of the host1, finding a list of confirmed viruses of that host2, and selection from that list according to matching symptoms3.

1. Often achievable; if host is wild you can duplicate your observation on iNaturalist for identification
2. Rarely achieveable; probably due to a lack of research, or lack of accessible information, for many species
3. Sometimes achieveable; but only if images or descriptions of symptoms can be be located, and only if each viral species produces distinct symptoms

Below is a list of resources that may be used to identify virus-like diseases.

  • International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses (ICTV). The ICTV maintains a complete database of all accepted viral taxa. This can be used to cursorily check whether there are, or have ever been, any virus species names that include the name of a host of interest. Note that some viruses may infect more species than than just the host mentioned in their name, and some virus species names do not include the name of any host. To search this database, tick the box Select to search across all ICTV releases and query the host genus and host common name(s).

Posted by jameskdouch jameskdouch, February 23, 2021 11:10



This is great. Thanks for sharing.

Posted by calconey about 2 months ago (Flag)

I'm glad to help. It needs some expansion though.

Posted by jameskdouch about 2 months ago (Flag)

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