A symptom-modulating RNA associated with tomato bushy stunt virus (TBSV) was investigated with respect to physical and biological properties. Linear RNA of approximately 396 nucleotides was packaged in viral coat protein and was dependent on TBSV for replication. Coinoculation of the small RNA with TBSV resulted in the attenuation of TBSV-induced symptoms and depression of virus synthesis in whole plants. Nucleotide sequence analysis revealed that the symptom-modulating RNA was derived from 5′, 3′, and internal segments of the TBSV genome. The identification of this symptom-modulating RNA as a colinear deletion mutant of the helper virus genome establishes it as the first definitive defective interfering RNA (DI RNA) to be identified in association with a plant virus.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)