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Faba bean necrotic yellows virus (genus Nanovirus) requires a helper factor for its aphid transmission.

Franz A.W., van der Wilk F., Verbeek M., Dullemans A.M., van den Heuvel J.F.

Purified faba bean necrotic yellows virus (FBNYV; genus Nanovirus) alone is not transmissible by its aphid vector, Acyrthosiphon pisum, regardless of whether it is acquired from artificial diets or directly microinjected into the aphid's hemocoel. The purified virus contains all of the genetic information required for its infection cycle as it readily replicated in cowpea protoplasts and systemically infected Vicia faba seedlings that were biolistically inoculated using gold particles coated with intact virions or viral DNA. The bombarded plants not only developed the typical disease syndrome, thus indicating that FBNYV is the sole causal agent of the disease, but also served as a source from which the virus was readily acquired and transmitted by A. pisum. The defect of the purified virus in aphid transmissibility suggests that FBNYV requires a helper factor (HF) for its vector transmission that is either nonfunctional or absent in purified virus suspensions. The requirement for an HF was confirmed in complementation experiments using two distinct isolates of the virus. These experiments revealed that aphids transmitted the purified virus isolate from artificial diets only when they had fed previously on plants infected with the other FBNYV isolate. Also, microinjected FBNYV, which persisted to the same extent in A. pisum as naturally acquired virus, was transmissible when aphids had acquired the HF from infected plants. This suggests that one of the functions of the HF in the transmission process is to facilitate virus transport across the hemocoel-salivary gland interface.

Virology 262:210-219(1999) [PubMed] [Europe PMC]

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