Infectous clones were prepared from virion DNA of three cauliflower mosaic virus (CaMV) isolates, 11/3, Xinjiang (XJ), and Aust, to investigate pathogenic variation in virus populations. Of 10 infectious clones obtained for isolate 11/3, four pathotypes were identified, each producing symptoms in turnip that differed from those of the 11/3 wild-type. Virus from two clonal groups of 11/3 was transmissible by aphids whereas that from two others was not. Of the five infectious clones obtained from isolate XJ, two groups were identified, one of which differed symptomatically from the wild-type. Only one infectious clone was obtained from isolate Aust and this had properties similar to the wild-type. Restriction enzyme polymorphisms were found in some clonal groups and these correlated with symptoms. Other groups with different pathogenic properties could not be distinguished apart by restriction site polymorphisms. Further variation was observed in the nucleotide sequences of gene II (coding for aphid transmission factor) from these viruses as compared with other CaMV isolates. In the aphid non-transmissible clones of isolate 11/3, one had a Gly to Arg mutation in gene II similar to that of other non-deleted non-transmissible CaMV isolates. The second had a 322 bp deletion at the site of a small direct repeat similar to that of isolate CM4-184 although occurring in a different position. The gene II deletion of isolate 11/3 produced a frame-shift that separated genes II and III by 60 bp. Most CaMV clones studied remained biologically stable producing similar symptoms during subsequent passages. However, one clone (11/3-7) produced two new biotypes during its first passage suggesting that it was relatively unstable. Our results show that wild-type populations of CaMV contain a range of infectious genome variants with contrasting biological properties and differing stability. We suggest that a variety of significant viral phenotypic changes can occur during each infection cycle resulting from relatively small genome changes.


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Most cited this month Most Cited RSS feed

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error