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Molecular Plant Pathology

Molecular Characterization of a New Sap-Transmissible Bipartite Genome Geminivirus Infecting Tomatoes in Mexico. Epaminondas J. Paplomatas, Department of Plant Pathology, University of California, Davis 95616, Current address: Benaki Phytopathological Institute, 8 St. Delta Str., 145 61 Kifissia-Athens, Greece; Viresh P. Patel(2), Yu-Ming Hou(3), Amine O. Noueiry(4), and Robert L. Gilbertson(5). (2)(3)(4)(5)Department of Plant Pathology, University of California, Davis 95616; (2)Current address: Department of Immunology, University of California, Los Angeles 90024. Phytopathology 84:1215-1224. Accepted for publication 28 July 1994. Copyright 1994 The American Phytopathological Society. DOI: 10.1094/Phyto-84-1215.

A bipartite genome geminivirus infecting tomatoes in northwestern Mexico was sap transmitted to tomato, Nicotiana benthamiana, and common bean and induced leaf crumpling, epinasty, and mottling. Geminivirus DNA-A and DNA-B components were each cloned from infected N. benthamiana and bean leaves. The N. benthamiana DNA-A and DNA-B components were infectious but induced only mild symptoms in N. benthamiana plants. The reduction in symptom severity was not the result of impaired replication of either component but was associated with the DNA-B component. In contrast, the bean DNA-A and DNA-B components were highly infectious and induced disease symptoms in N. benthamiana, bean, and tomato plants indistinguishable from those induced by the sap-transmissible geminivirus. Molecular characterization of the N. benthamiana and bean DNA components indicated that the DNA-A components were identical, whereas the DNA-B components were different but closely related. The original tomato sample was shown to be infected with both DNA-B components by polymerase chain reaction analysis. The bean DNA-A and DNA-B components comprise the genome of a new sap-transmissible bipartite genome geminivirus. This geminivirus is different from previously characterized geminiviruses, and the name tomato leaf crumple (TLCrV) is proposed. TLCrV is a member of the Abutilon mosaic cluster of Western Hemisphere bipartite genome geminiviruses and is most closely related to tomato mottle, Abutilon mosaic, and bean dwarf mosaic geminiviruses.

Additional keywords: Bemisia tabaci, Lycopersicon esculentum, pseudo-recombination, viral evolution, whitefly-transmitted geminiviruses.