Arch Virol (2003) 148: 2137–2153
The complete nucleotide sequence of Plum pox virus isolates
from sweet (PPV-SwC) and sour (PPV-SoC) cherry
and their taxonomic relationships within the species
, S. Comes
, E. Maiss
, P. Piazzolla
, and A. Crescenzi
Dipartimento di Biologia, Difesa e Biotecnologie Agro-Forestali,
Universit`a degli Studi della Basilicata, Potenza, Italy
Institut f¨ur Pﬂanzenkrankheiten und Pﬂanzenschutz,
Universit¨at Hannover, Germany
Received February 26, 2003; accepted June 18, 2003
Published online August 18, 2003
Summary. Plum pox virus (PPV) sweet (SwC) and sour (SoC) cherry isolates
were the ﬁrst PPV isolates to be recovered from natural infection in sweet and
sour cherry plants, respectively.
Their complete nucleotide sequences have been determined ﬁnding a deduced
genome organisation typical for PPV species. Both genomes are 9795 nucleotides
long, excluding the 3
terminal poly(A) tail, and contain an open reading frame
of 9432 nt, encoding a polyprotein of 3143 amino acids.
The nucleotide and predicted amino acid sequences of PPV-SwC and SoC
have been pairwise compared with available sequences of different PPV strains.
Although a very high similarity exists between the whole genomes and polypro-
teins of the two cherry isolates, high levels of divergence have been calculated
with sequences of PPV-M, D and EA isolates. In particular, the most considerable
divergence has been found in part of 5
non coding region, in regions encoding
P1, P3 + 6K1, 6K2 and NIa-VPg proteins as well as in the N-terminal domain of
the coat protein.
Phylogenetic analysis have been undertaken in order to establish the taxonomic
localisation of SwC and SoC isolates within PPV species, showing that they are
always clustered together and separated from the rest of PPV strains, being clearly
the most distant.
Plum pox virus (PPV) is the causal agent of sharka disease, one of the most
devastating diseases of stone fruits which severely affects susceptible crops in