Some properties of the particles of citrus ringspot virus (CtRSV) and the related citrus psorosis-associated virus (CPsAV) are described. The particles of CtRSV have been reported to be sinuous linear structures about 10 nm in diameter and of two lengths (300 to 500 nm and 1500 to 2500 nm) representing ‘top’ and ‘bottom’ sedimentation components. We show that these particles are collapsed double-stranded forms of nucleocapsid-like, highly flexuous open circles formed of filaments 3 to 4 nm in diameter. Top-component filaments had contour lengths of 600 to 1000 nm, i.e. twice that reported for the corresponding collapsed form. Bottom-component filaments had contour lengths about four times longer than those of top-component filaments. The structures suggest that CtRSV represents a new genus (possibly family) related to the tenuiviruses. However, we failed to demonstrate any serological relationship between CtRSV and several tenuiviruses; moreover, the capsid protein sizes and host ranges are quite different. We offer the name for the proposed new genus.


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