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Distribution of Viruses Infecting Cucurbit Crops and Isolation of Potential New Virus-Like Sequences from Weeds in Oklahoma

February 2012 , Volume 96 , Number  2
Pages  243 - 248

Akhtar Ali, Osama Mohammad, and Abeer Khattab, Department of Biological Science, The University of Tulsa, Tulsa, OK 74104

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Accepted for publication 6 September 2011.

Field surveys were conducted from 2008 to 2010 to detect and determine the incidence of viruses in the major cucurbit-growing areas of Oklahoma. In total, 1,049 symptomatic leaf samples (890 from cucurbits, 109 from weed species, and 50 from crop plants [agricultural crops]) were collected from 90 fields in four counties (Atoka, Blaine, Jefferson, and Tulsa) of Oklahoma. Samples were tested against seven viruses, including Cucumber mosaic virus (CMV), Cucumber green mottle mosaic virus (CGMMV), Melon necrotic spot virus (MNSV), Papaya ringspot virus-watermelon strain (PRSV-W, formerly known as Watermelon mosaic virus-1), Squash mosaic virus (SqMV), Watermelon mosaic virus-2 (WMV-2), and Zucchini yellow mosaic virus (ZYMV), using dot-immunobinding assay (DIBA). Results showed the highest incidence for PRSV (51%), followed by WMV-2 (14%) and ZYMV (10%) among the collected samples. SqMV, MNSV, and CMV were detected in 3.8, 3.3, and 1.1% of the samples, respectively. None of the samples collected during surveys reacted positively against the antiserum of CGMMV. Mixed virus infections were common involving two (5.18%) or three (4.61%) viruses in various combinations. New weed host species were found to be infected with PRSV when confirmed by both DIBA and reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Some weed species contained possible new viruses when analyzed by random RT-PCR, followed by cloning, sequencing, and BLAST analysis with sequences in GenBank.

© 2012 The American Phytopathological Society