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The genus is distinguished on the basis of genetic characters.
No details are available on the morphology of virions.
Genome (Shi et al., 2018, Ng et al., 2015b): 7,204–7,400 nt (5′-UTR: 435–487 nt; ORF: 6,699–6,861 nt; 3′-UTR: 52–70 nt). The location of the cre has not been identified.
The deduced polyprotein ranges from 2,233 to 2,287 aa. The function of the L and 2A proteins is unclear. 1AB remains uncleaved. The 1D/2A and 2A/2B cleavage sites are unclear.
No virus has been isolated. Viral RNA has been detected in faecal samples and tissue specimens of Forsten's tortoises (Indotestudo forstenii), Chinese stripe-necked turtles and geckos (Gekko similignum).
Rafivirus: refers phonetically to Raph(ael), a fictional character in the comic Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
Members of a species of genus Rafivirus:
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