Evolutionary dynamics of endogenous feline leukemia virus proliferation among species of the domestic cat lineage

Sagi Polani, Alfred L. Roca*, Bryan B. Rosensteel, Sergios Orestis Kolokotronis, Gila Kahila Bar-Gal

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Endogenous feline leukemia viruses (enFeLVs) occur in the germ lines of the domestic cat and related wild species (genus Felis). We sequenced the long terminal repeats and part of the env region of enFeLVs in domestic cats and five wild species. A total of 305 enFeLV sequences were generated across 17 individuals, demonstrating considerable diversity within two major clades. Distinct proliferations of enFeLVs occurred before and after the black-footed cat diverged from the other species. Diversity of enFeLVs was limited for the sand cat and jungle cat suggesting that proliferation of enFeLVs occurred within these species after they diverged. Relationships among enFeLVs were congruent with host species relationships except for the jungle cat, which carried only enFeLVs from a lineage that recently invaded the germline (enFeLV-AGTT). Comparison of wildcat and domestic cat enFeLVs indicated that a distinctive germ line invasion of enFeLVs has not occurred since the cat was domesticated.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)397-407
Number of pages11
Issue number2
StatePublished - 30 Sep 2010

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank S. J. O'Brien and the LGD/NCI for initial access to samples. All samples had been collected in compliance with federal regulations and permits. This work was supported by the Morris Animal Foundation grant D06FE-029 . SOK was supported by the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) .


  • African wildcat
  • Black-footed cat
  • Domestic cat
  • Endogenous retroviruses
  • European wildcat
  • Jungle cat
  • Oncoretroviruses
  • Sand cat


Dive into the research topics of 'Evolutionary dynamics of endogenous feline leukemia virus proliferation among species of the domestic cat lineage'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this