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Sequence-, Tissue-, and Delivery-Specific Targeting of RNA During Post-Transcriptional Gene Silencing

August 2002 , Volume 15 , Number  8
Pages  753 - 763

Ezequiel Balmori-Melian , 1 , 2 Robin M. MacDiarmid , 1 David L. Beck , 1 Richard C. Gardner , 2 and Richard L. S. Forster 1

1The Horticulture and Food Research Institute of New Zealand Limited, Private Bag 92169 Auckland, New Zealand; 2University of Auckland, Private Bag 92019 Auckland, New Zealand

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Accepted 27 March 2002.

Transgenic Nicotiana benthamiana plants expressing an untranslatable version of the coat protein (CP) gene from the Tamarillo mosaic virus (TaMV) were either resistant to TaMV infection or recovered from infection. These phenotypes were the result of a post-transcriptional gene silencing (PTGS) mechanism that targeted TaMV-CP sequences for degradation. The TaMV-CP sequences were degraded when present in the wild-type TaMV potyvirus, in transgene mRNA, or in chimeric viral vectors based on White clover mosaic virus. The more efficiently targeted region was mapped to a 134-nt segment. Differences were observed in the efficiency of targeting during cell-to-cell and long-distance movement of the chimeric viruses. However, the TaMV-CP sequences do not appear to be targeted for degradation when delivered by biolistics.

Additional keywords: RT-PCR , transgenic plants , viral replication .

© 2002 The American Phytopathological Society