Plasmopara halstedii virus (PhV) is one of the few characterized oomycete viruses. Although it is fully sequenced and well-studied in its genetic diversity, the exact classification and phylogenetic relationships of PhV remain uncertain. The only known virus with characteristics similar to PhV is the Sclerophthora macrospora Virus A (SmV-A). Both viruses infect obligate biotrophic oomycetes. While RNA-dependent RNA polymerases (RdRp) of oomycetes viruses have high similarity to the corresponding enzymes from viruses classified in the family Nodaviridae, the coat proteins (CP) seem to be completely different from those of other viruses of this family. In contrast, the coat proteins of PhV and SmV-A have high similarity to viruses classified in the Tombusviridae, Circoviridae and a new group of hybrid DNA-RNA viruses (so-called chimeric viruses or cruciviruses). Because phylogenetic analyses based on the sequences of either RdRp or CP result in different affinities, an alternative, genome-based approach combining the sequences of both proteins was used. This analysis placed the two oomycete viruses together with Tombunodavirus UC1 in a new, independent group between families Nodaviridae and Tombusviridae.
Archives of Virology – Springer Journals
Published: Feb 2, 2017
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