A Geminivirus-Satellite Complex is Associated with Leaf Deformity of Mentha (Mint) Plants in Punjab
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A widespread leaf deformity disease of mentha (mint), accompanied by whiteflies, the vectors of begomoviruses, was observed in Punjab in the last few years. The presence of begomovirus was indicated by DNA dot-blot analysis using the conserved coat protein and replication-associated protein genes of another begomovirus, Sri Lankan cassava mosaic virus (SLCMV). A DNA fragment (2.0 kb), representing a partial genomic DNA of a begomovirus, amplified from the symptomatic mentha leaves was used to design end-primers and further amplify an additional 0.9 kb fragment, representing the remaining portion of the resident viral DNA. The two sequences, assembled together (2.7 kb), showed that they represented the complete sequence of an isolate of Tomato leaf curl Karnataka virus (ToLCKV) DNA. Using universal betasatellite primers, a 1.4 kb fragment was amplified from the same sample. This cloned DNA fragment showed complete sequence identity with the previously reported Cotton leaf curl Multan betasatellite (CLCuMB). Majority of the symptomatic mentha leaf samples, collected from four districts of Punjab, showed cross-hybridization in DNA dot-blot using cloned SLCMV and CLCuMB DNA, indicating the presence of one or more begomoviruses related to SLCMV and the betasatellite, CLCuMB. The begomovirus and betasatellite could be mechanically transmitted to Nicotiana benthamiana. Whitefly transmission of the resident begomovirus could also be demonstrated on mentha. The evidence indicates the association of ToLCKV and CLCuMB, a hitherto new combination of a begomovirus and a betasatellite associated with a leaf deformity disease in mentha in Punjab.
KeywordsMentha Begomovirus Betasatellite Whitefly
BKB is grateful to Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, Govt. of India for Research fellowship. Authors are grateful to Dr V. G. Malathi, Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi, for providing the antisera against MYMIV.
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