The tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV), a member of the Flaviviridae family, is currently subdivided into three main subtypes—the European (TBEV-Eu), the Far-Eastern (TBEV-FE), and the Siberian (TBEV-Sib). The TBEV-Sib is the most common subtype and found in all regions where TBEV was detected, except for Central and Western Europe. Currently, four genetic lineages have been described within TBEV-Sib. In this study, detailed analysis of TBEV-Sib genetic diversity, geographic distribution, phylogeography and divergence time of different TBEV-Sib genetic lineages based on E gene fragments, complete genome sequences, and all currently available data in the GenBank database was performed. As a result, a novel Bosnia lineage within the TBEV-Sib was identified. It was demonstrated that the Zausaev lineage is the most widely distributed among the TBEV-Sib lineages, and was detected in all studied regions except the Far East. The Vasilchenko lineage was found from Western Siberia to the Far East. The Baltic lineage is presented from Europe to Western Siberia. The Obskaya lineage was found only in Western Siberia. TBEV strains from a newly described Bosnia lineage were detected in Bosnia, the Crimean peninsula, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan. The greatest divergence of the TBEV-Sib genetic variants was observed in Western Siberia. Within the TBEV-Sib, the Obskaya lineage diverged from the common ancestor the earliest, after that the Bosnia lineage was separated, then the Baltic lineage, and the Zausaev and Vasilchenko lineages diverged most recently.
- Genetic diversity
- Genetic lineages
- Siberian subtype
- Tick-borne encephalitis virus