Archives of Virology

, Volume 156, Issue 7, pp 1199–1208 | Cite as

Characterization of a novel dsRNA element in the pine endophytic fungus Diplodia scrobiculata

  • Juanita De Wet
  • Wubetu Bihon
  • Oliver Preisig
  • Brenda D. Wingfield
  • Michael J. Wingfield
Original Article


Diplodia scrobiculata and Diplodia pinea are endophytic fungi associated with dieback and cankers of mainly Pinus spp. in many parts of the world. These two fungi are closely related and have, in the past, been considered to represent two morphological forms (A and B morphotypes) of D. pinea. dsRNA elements are known to occur in both D. scrobiculata and D. pinea. Two dsRNA elements from D. pinea, SsRV1 and SsRV2, have been characterized previously. The aim of this study was to characterize a third dsRNA element that is most commonly associated with D. scrobiculata and to determine its phylogenetic relationship to other mycoviruses. The 5018-bp genome of this element was sequenced, and it is referred to as D. scrobiculata RNA virus 1, or DsRV1. It has two open reading frames (ORFs), one of which codes for a putative polypeptide with a high degree of similarity to proteins of the vacuolar protein-sorting (VPS) machinery, and the other for an RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp). Phylogenetic comparisons based on amino acid sequence alignments of the RdRp revealed that DsRV1 is closely related to a dsRNA element isolated from Phlebiopsis gigantea (PgV2), and they grouped separately from virus families in which mycoviruses have previously been described. Although D. pinea and D. scrobiculata are closely related, DsRV1 does not share high sequence identity with SsRV1 or SsRV2, and they probably have different recent evolutionary origins.


Endophytic Fungus Fungal Host RdRp Gene Putative Polypeptide dsRNA Element 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



We thank the National Research Foundation (NRF), members of the Tree Pathology Co-operative Programme (TPCP) and the THRIP initiative of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), South Africa, for financial support.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Juanita De Wet
    • 1
  • Wubetu Bihon
    • 2
  • Oliver Preisig
    • 1
  • Brenda D. Wingfield
    • 2
  • Michael J. Wingfield
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Microbiology and Plant Pathology, Forestry and Agricultural Biotechnology Institute (FABI)University of PretoriaPretoriaSouth Africa
  2. 2.Departments of Genetics, Forestry and Agricultural Biotechnology Institute (FABI)University of PretoriaPretoriaSouth Africa

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