Zuckerman Faculty Scholar Neta Shlezinger’s article on fungal viruses published in Frontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology
Viruses are unanimously omnipresent in the biosphere. While fungi are a major cause of human, animal, and plant disease, they too can be infected by viruses. Mycoviruses are viruses that use the fungal molecular machinery for self-replication and sustainability and are widespread in the fungal kingdom, infecting over 20% of tested isolates. While some mycoviral infections are benign, there are examples of mycoviruses having both beneficial and detrimental effects on their fungal host. This article focuses on favorable mycovirus-fungus interactions, and proposes that mycoviruses hijack fungal survival pathways and modify fungal virulence and host adaptation.