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Identification, Characterization, and Detection of Black raspberry necrosis virus

January 2007 , Volume 97 , Number  1
Pages  44 - 50

Anne Halgren , Ioannis E. Tzanetakis , and Robert R. Martin

First, second, and third authors: Department of Botany and Plant Pathology and Center for Genome Research and Biocomputing, Oregon State University, Corvallis; and third author: U.S. Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service, Horticultural Crops Research Laboratory, Corvallis, OR

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Accepted for publication 31 July 2006.

A serious disease was observed in black raspberry (Rubus occidentalis) in Oregon in the last decade. Plants showing mosaic symptoms declined rapidly and, in many cases, died after several years. Double-stranded RNA extraction from symptomatic black raspberry revealed the presence of two high molecular weight bands which were cloned and sequenced. Sequence analysis disclosed the presence of a novel virus that was tentatively named Black raspberry decline-associated virus (BRDaV). The complete sequences of the two genomic RNAs, excluding the 3′ poly-adenosine tails, were 7,581 and 6,364 nucleotides, respectively. The genome organization was identical to that of Strawberry mottle virus, a member of the genus Sadwavirus. The C terminus of the RNA 1 poly-protein is unique within the genus Sadwavirus, with homology to AlkB-like domains, suggesting a role in repair of alkylation damage. A reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction test was designed for the detection of BRDaV from Rubus tissue, and tests revealed that BRDaV was associated consistently with the observed decline symptoms. While this publication was under review, it came to our attention that scientists at the Scottish Crop Research Institute had molecular data on Black raspberry necrosis virus (BRNV), a virus that shared many biological properties with BRDaV. After exchange of data, we concluded that BRDaV is a strain of BRNV, a previously described yet unsequenced virus. The North American strain was vectored nonpersistently by the large raspberry aphid and the green peach aphid. Phylogenetic analysis indicates that BRNV belongs to the genus Sadwavirus.

The American Phytopathological Society, 2007