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Joá yellow blotch-associated virus, a new alphanucleorhabdovirus from a wild solanaceous plant in Brazil

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We identified a novel plant rhabdovirus infecting native joá (Solanum aculeatissimum) plants in Brazil. Infected plants showed yellow blotches on the leaves, and typical enveloped bacilliform rhabdovirus particles associated with the nucleus were seen in thin sections by electron microscopy. The virus could be graft-transmitted to healthy joá and tomato plants but was not mechanically transmissible. RT-PCR using degenerate plant rhabdovirus L gene primers yielded an amplicon from extracted total RNA, the sequence of which was similar to those of alphanucleorhabdoviruses. Based on close sequence matches, especially with the type member potato yellow dwarf virus (PYDV), we adopted a degenerate-primer-walking strategy towards both genome ends. The complete genome of joá yellow blotch-associated virus (JYBaV) is comprised of 12,965 nucleotides, is less than 75% identical to that of its closest relative PYDV, and clusters with PYDV and other alphanucleorhabdoviruses in L protein phylogenetic trees, suggesting that it should be taxonomically classified in a new species in the genus Alphanucleorhabdovirus, family Rhabdoviridae. The genome organization of JYBaV is typical of the ‘PYDV-like’ subgroup of alphanucleorhabdoviruses, with seven genes (N-X-P-Y-M-G-L) separated by conserved intergenic regions and flanked by partly complementary 3' leader and 5' trailer regions.

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This work was jointly supported by the Queensland Government Department of Agriculture and Fisheries and the University of Queensland. Additional support was provided by FAPESP Grants: 2017/50222-0, Sprint Fapesp/UQ (2017/50039) and Biota Program (2017/18910-4).

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Correspondence to Ralf G. Dietzgen.

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The authors have no conflict of interest or competing interests.

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Appropriate permits for import of biological materials were obtained from the Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment. Cloning and sequencing of the JYBaV genome was done under permit from the University of Queensland Institutional Biosafety Committee. This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.

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The annotated genome sequence generated and analysed during the current study is available in the DDBJ/EMBL/GenBank databases under the accession number MW014292.

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Dietzgen, R.G., Bejerman, N.E., Mei, Y. et al. Joá yellow blotch-associated virus, a new alphanucleorhabdovirus from a wild solanaceous plant in Brazil. Arch Virol 166, 1615–1622 (2021).

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