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Poster: Diseases of Plants: Disease Detection & Diagnosis


Occurrence of endornaviruses in non-cultivated plant species
R. HERSCHLAG (1), E. Rodrigues de Souto (2), R. Valverde (1) (1) Louisiana State University Agricultural Center, U.S.A.; (2) Universidade Estadual de Maringa, Brazil

Large dsRNAs have been extracted from plants infected with acute and persistent viruses and from fungi infected with mycoviruses. These extracted dsRNAs have been used for viral disease diagnosis and virus identification. We used a modified version of the non-phenol batch method, in combination with reverse-transcription PCR (RT-PCR), to test symptomless, non-cultivated, plant species for endornaviruses. Foliar tissues were collected from different plant species from various locations within the city of Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Tissues were desiccated with silica gel and used for dsRNA extractions. After testing 132 plant species, belonging to 60 families, six yielded dsRNAs similar in size (14-15 kb) to reported endornaviruses. Putative endornaviruses were detected in Alternanthera philoxeroides (alligator weed), Geranium carolinianum (wild geranium), Sonchus asper (spiny sow thistle), Sorghum halepense (Johnson grass), and Hydrocotyle umbellata (dollar weed). The same endornaviruses were also detected in at least 10 individual plants of the same species. RT-PCR tests using endornavirus-degenerate primers were conducted with the dsRNAs of the six putative endornaviruses. Results of this investigation suggest that endornaviruses occur at a rate of approximately 5% in non-cultivated plant species and that like endornaviruses of cultivated plants, their vertically transmission rate is high.