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Research article2004Peer reviewedOpen access

In vitro recombinants of two nearly identical potyviral isolates express novel virulence and symptom phenotypes in plants

Paalme V, Gammelgard E, Jarvekulg L, Valkonen JPT


Six novel chimeric viruses were constructed by sequentially exchanging segments of the viral genomes between the infectious cDNA clone (pPVA-B11) of Potato virus A (isolate PVA-B11) and pUFL, an almost identical infectious cDNA of PVA (isolate U) made in this study. The infectious in vitro transcripts of pUFL and pPVA-B11 caused similar severe mosaic and leaf malformation phenotypes in systemically infected leaves of Nicotiana benthamiana. In contrast, one chimera induced a unique phenotype of yellow vein chlorosis without leaf malformation with viral titres that were equivalent to those of the parental viruses. Furthermore, as opposed to the viral cDNAs from which it was assembled, one chimera showed no detectable infectivity of N. benthamiana plants. Thus, recombination of nearly identical, phenotypically similar virus genomes can give rise to new viral strains with novel virulence and symptom phenotypes, which has not previously been demonstrated with potyviruses. One chimera failed to cause systemic infection in potato plants, but, nevertheless, avirulence could not be attributed to a single genomic region. These data suggest that different parts of the potyviral genome function coordinately. The results provide novel insights into the evolution of the genus Potyvirus

Published in

Journal of General Virology
2004, Volume: 85, pages: 739-747

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      Agricultural Science

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