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Poster: Diseases of Plants: New & Emerging Diseases


Blueberry green mosaic symptoms are associated with the presence of a new vitivirus
T. THEKKE-VEETIL (1), T. Ho (1), J. Polashock (2), I. Tzanetakis (1) (1) University of Arkansas, U.S.A.; (2) USDA-ARS, U.S.A.

A virus was discovered in blueberry plants showing green mosaic symptoms, distinct symptomology from that associated with mosaic disease and was provisionally named as Blueberry green mosaic virus (BGMV). The genome was amplified using overlapping PCRs and has the typical organization of members of the genus Vitivirus, family Betaflexiviridae including five open reading frames (ORFs) and a 3’ polyadenylated terminus. The ORFs code for the viral replicase, a 16 kDa protein of unknown function, the movement, coat and nucleic acid binding proteins, the latter presumably involved in RNA interference. Pairwise comparisons of the polymerase conserved domains of BGMV and established members of the genus showed amino acid identity ranging from 57-61% whereas phylogenetic analysis placed the virus in a distinct clade within the genus. The virus has been found in all plants showing green mosaic symptoms and its distribution and role in symptomology are currently being evaluated.