NCBI Taxonomy – influenza species names update

NCBI Taxonomy will introduce new binomial influenza species names like ‘Alphainfluenzavirus influenzae’ for ‘Influenza A virus’ in order to reflect changes to the International Code of Virus Classification and Nomenclature (ICVCN) made by the International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses (ICTV). Changes are expected to be in place near June 2023 and will be reflected in classifications for the INSDC.

In order to minimize the impact, the taxonomy schema will keep the former names in the lineages for each species; however, they will be moved below the (new) species taxa in the hierarchy. Taxonomy Identifiers (TaxIds) remain the same and will continue to refer to the below-species names. For example, TaxId 11320 will still refer to ‘influenza A virus’.

A relevant blog post explaining the change in more detail is here: