Genetic variability of blueberry scorch virus isolates from highbush blueberry in New York State
The genetic variability of blueberry scorch virus (BlScV) isolates from New York was determined within a portion of the RNA-dependent RNA polymerase gene and the triple gene block and coat protein (CP) genes. Phylogenetic analysis of 19 New York isolates and other isolates for which sequence information is available in GenBank revealed two distinct clades, regardless of the coding region analyzed, and limited variability within (0.029 ± 0.007) and between (0.183 ± 0.032) phylogroups. Recombination events were identified in the CP gene of three New York isolates, and codons of the five BlScV genes characterized were found to be under neutral or negative selective pressure.
KeywordsBlueberry scorch virus Evolution Genetic variability Highbush blueberry Purifying selection Recombination
We are grateful to the growers who provided access to their blueberry operations and acknowledge the support from USDA-NIFA through the New York State Agriculture Experiment Station and the Polish National Science Center (grant no. 2012/07/N/NZ9/01797). Thanks to Serena Minutillo and David MacUmber for assistance with sample collection. Elżbieta Kalinowska was supported by a fellowship from Warsaw University of Life Sciences for a three-month visit to Cornell University.
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