About half of Japanese isolates of beet necrotic yellow vein virus (BNYVV) were found to contain RNA 5 molecules, which were also detected in virus isolates from China and France. Sequence comparisons of RNA 5 (nucleotides 327 to 1171) in 25 isolates showed that there are up to 8% sequence differences, and that RNA 5 variants fall into three groups: group I contains most of the Japanese and Chinese isolates, group II two Japanese isolates, and group III four French isolates. The group I isolates fall into three small clusters. In the 26 kDa coding region of RNA 5, there was a maximum of 1.5% nucleotide sequence differences (6 amino acid changes) within the group and 8.4% nucleotide sequence differences (17 amino acid changes) between the groups. Comparisons of the coat protein gene of RNA 2 revealed that most of the Japanese and Chinese isolates belonged to the A type strain, but some isolates were of the B type. The French isolates (P type) were closely related to those of the A type. Mixed infections of the two types of virus and the two groups of RNA 5 were detected in a small area of Hokkaido. BNYVV might have been introduced into Japan and China by a similar route from at least two origins. These results, together with other evidence, suggest that the three groups of RNA 5 variants separated from an original population a long time ago and, thereafter, the group I population diverged further into three clusters, which may have been associated with the A type strain rather than the B type.
Archives of Virology – Springer Journals
Published: May 1, 1999
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