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VIEW ARTICLE   |    DOI: 10.1094/MPMI-6-635

Broad Resistance to Tobamoviruses Is Mediated by a Modified Tobacco Mosaic Virus Replicase Transgene. J. Donson. Biosource Genetics Corporation, 3333 Vaca Valley Parkway, Vacaville, CA 95688 U.S.A. C. M. Kearney(2,3), T. H. Turpen(1,3), I. A. Khan(2,3), G. Kurath(3), A. M. Turpen(1), G. E. Jones(3), W. O. Dawson(2,3), and D. J. Lewandowski(2,3). (1)Biosource Genetics Corporation, 3333 Vaca Valley Parkway, Vacaville, CA 95688 U.S.A.; and (2)Department of Plant Pathology, University of Florida, Citrus Research and Education Center, 700 Experiment Station Road, Lake Alfred 33850 U.S.A. (3)This work began at the Department of Plant Pathology, University of California, Riverside 92521 U.S.A. MPMI 6:635-642. Accepted 14 June 1993. Copyright 1993 The American Phytopathological Society.

Tobacco plants made transgenic to express the wild type tobacco mosaic virus (TMV) 183-kDa replicase gene were not resistant to TMV. However, transgenic plants containing essentially the same sequences, but with an additional insertion that would terminate translation in the middle of the 183-kDa gene, were highly resistant to systemic infection by TMV and other tobamoviruses. The 1.4-kbp insertion in the replicase open reading frame (ORF) of the resistant plants was shown by DNA sequencing to be an IS10-like transposable element, which apparently inserted itself into the TMV sequence at nucleotide 2875 sometime during the propagation of this replicase ORF plasmid (pREP21). Because of four stop codons, in frame with the TMV replicase ORF on the immediate 5' border of the IS insertion, REP21 effectively represents domain 1 (putative methylase domain) and a portion of domain 2 (putative helicase domain) of the TMV replicase ORF. REP21 Xanthi tobacco plants had a level of resistance to TMV similar to other reported transgenic replicase plants. No TMV was detected in upper leaves of these plants at 1-mo postinoculation. In addition, REP21 plants were resistant to an unusually broad range of tobamoviruses including tomato mosaic virus, tobacco mild green mosaic virus, TMV-U5, green tomato atypical mosaic virus, and ribgrass mosaic virus. These plants were not resistant to cucumber mosaic cucumovirus. The lack of systemic infection by TMV was due to reduced multiplication in inoculated leaves rather than complete prevention of replication. Inoculation of progeny of the cross of a resistant REP21 line with the TMV local lesion host, Xanthi nc tobacco, resulted in production of local lesions that were delayed, smaller, and less numerous.

Additional Keywords: transformed plants, plant protection, virus resistance, replicase-mediated protection.