The ORF1 products of tombusviruses play a crucial role in lethal necrosis of virus-infected plants

J. Burgyán, C. Hornyik, G. Szittya, D. Silhavy, G. Bisztray

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35 Citations (Scopus)


Hybrids of cymbidium ringspot (CymRSV) and carnation Italian ringspot (CIRV) tombusviruses were used to identify viral symptom determinants responsible for the generalized necrosis in tombusvirus-infected plants. Surprisingly, symptoms of Nicotiana benthamiana infected with CymRSV/CIRV hybrids were distinctly different. It was demonstrated that not all chimeras expressing wild-type (wt) levels of p19 protein caused systemic necrosis as both parents CymRSV and CIRV did. We showed here that hybrids containing chimeric ORF1 were not able to induce lethal necrosis even if the viral replication of these constructs was not altered significantly. However, if a wt p33 (product of ORF1) of CymRSV was provided in trans in transgenic plants expressing p33 and its readthrough product p92, the lethal necrosis characteristic to tombusvirus infection was restored. In addition, the expression of p33 by a potato virus X viral vector in N. benthamiana caused severe chlorosis and occasionally necrosis, indicating the importance of p33 in wt symptoms of tombusviruses. Thus, our results provide evidence that elicitation of the necrotic phenotype requires the presence of the wt p33 in addition to the p19 protein of tombusviruses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10873-10881
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Virology
Issue number23
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Insect Science
  • Virology

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