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Oral: Viral Diseases


Virus populations associated with Maize lethal necrosis (MLN) in East Africa
L. STEWART (1), M. Redinbaugh (1), S. Wijeratne (2), G. Mahuku (3), C. Niblett (4), A. Kiggundu (5), G. Asea (5), A. Wangai (6), K. Willie (1), D. Massawe (7) (1) USDA-ARS Corn, Soybean and Wheat Quality Research Unit, U.S.A.; (2) Molecular and Cellular I

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Maize lethal necrosis (MLN) has emerged as a devastating disease in East Africa in recent years. MLN is caused by co-infection of a maize-infecting potyvirus and maize chlorotic mottle virus (MCMV). Deep sequencing of MLN-associated samples collected in Kenya and Uganda indicate high conservation of MCMV sequences, whereas the associated potyvirus population is diverse and complex. Sugarcane mosaic virus (SCMV)-like sequences are abundant and variable across samples, and clustered into four groups with over 10% nucleotide sequence divergence. Sequence analyses indicate presence of other putative viruses in MLN-diseased tissue that require further characterization. These data are valuable to inform diagnostics, containment, and management of destructive maize viruses in East Africa.