The products of partial proteolysis of the 126000 translation products of the RNA of eight tobamoviruses were separated by SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. The peptide patterns obtained were compared using a computer program designed to establish phylogenetic relationships. The resulting most-parsimonious phylogenetic trees grouped the tobamoviruses into clusters I (tobacco mosaic virus, tomato mosaic virus, tobacco mild green mosaic virus, pepper mild mottle virus) and II (sunn-hemp mosaic virus, cucumber green mottle mosaic virus, kyuri green mottle mosaic virus), with ribgrass mosaic virus in an intermediate position. This clustering resembles that obtained when the coat proteins of these viruses are compared. If the tobamoviruses have arisen by divergence from an ancestral type, the results suggest that different parts of the genome have diverged similarly and that recombination has not played a major role in the evolution of the group.


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