Complementary DNAs to the virion RNAs of the ST9 strain of beet western yellows luteovirus (BWYV) were cloned and used for hybridization analyses. These showed that the two major virion ssRNAs, the genomic RNA, approximately 6 kb, and the 3.1 kb ST9-associated RNA, do not show detectable sequence homology. Evidence was also obtained concerning an ssRNA molecule of approximate size 0.72 kb, which hybridized with selected cDNA clones to the BWYV 6 kb genomic RNA; small amounts of it are associated with virions of ST9 and ST9-M BWYV isolates. Extracts of plants infected by ST9 and other BWYV isolates contained ssRNAs of approximately 6 kb, 2.9 kb and 0.72 kb in size. Extracts of ST9-infected plants also contained RNAs of approximately 3.1 kb and 0.48 kb which hybridized with selected cDNA clones prepared from the ST9-associated 3.1 kb virion RNA. cDNA clones of the ST9 virion 6 kb RNA also hybridized with the genomic 6 kb RNA of other BWYV isolates. None of the clones hybridized with preparations of other luteoviruses tested. No RNA molecule with a sequence related to the 3.1 kb ST9-associated virion RNA was detected in virions or plant tissues infected by other isolates of BWYV or other luteoviruses.

Keyword(s): BWYV RNAs , cDNA and satellite RNA

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