Author(s): Hormuzdi SG, Bisaro DM
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Abstract The monopartite DNA genome of beet curly top geminivirus (BCTV, strain Logan) contains four leftward, complementary sense open reading frames (ORFs) designated L1, L2, L3, and L4 and three rightward, virion sense ORFs designated R1, R2, and R3 (R1 encodes the coat protein). The R3 ORF has not been reported previously in the BCTV genome, and evidence for three functional virion sense genes on one genome component has not been presented before for any geminivirus. We investigated the functions of the virion sense ORFs by introducing mutations into each of them. We found that in Nicotiana benthamiana plants, BCTV genomes containing mutations in ORF R1 were not infectious, whereas an R3- mutant was very weakly infectious. The small proportion of plants infected by the R3- mutant remained asymptomatic and contained greatly reduced amounts of viral DNA. An R2- mutant was highly infectious but asymptomatic, and in infected plants it accumulated mostly the double-stranded DNA (dsDNA) replicative form in nearly wild-type amounts. All of the mutants replicated in tobacco protoplasts, although R1- and R2- mutants accumulated reduced amounts of genomic single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) relative to wild-type virus. In the case of R2- mutants, the reduction was large (approx. ninefold) and was accompanied by a similar increase in dsDNA levels. The results suggest that the R1 and R3 gene products are required for efficient movement of the virus in the infected plant, whereas the R2 gene product may be involved in the regulation of ssDNA vs dsDNA levels.
This article was published in Virology
and referenced in Journal of Addiction Research & Therapy