Complementary DNA copies of the genomic RNA of melon necrotic spot virus (MNSV) have been cloned and the region deduced to encode the coat protein has been sequenced. The putative coat protein coding region, located near the 3′ end of the genome, consists of 1170 nucleotides and has the potential to encode a 390 amino acid protein of 41840. Our data show that although MNSV is a carmovirus, its coat protein more closely resembles those of the tombusviruses than those of the carmoviruses sequenced to date, in both the extent of sequence similarity and in the length of the random/arm and protruding domains of the coat protein. Furthermore, dot matrix comparisons revealed sequence similarity between the coat protein protruding domains of MNSV and the cucumber necrosis tombusvirus. This similarity may be involved in one or more of the biological properties these two viruses share, such as the ability to infect cucumbers naturally and to be transmitted by the soil-inhabiting fungus .


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