Amino Acid 129 of Cucumber mosaic virus Coat Protein Determines Local Symptom Expression and Systemic Movement in Tetragonia expansa, Momordica charantia and Physalis floridana
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Local symptom expression and systemic movement of Cucumber mosaic virus (CMV) in Tetragonia expansa, Momordica charantia and Physalis floridana were mapped to the amino acid at position 129 of CMV coat protein (CP), using pseudorecombinants, chimeric RNAs, a site-directed mutant of RNA 3 and four strains of CMV : pepo-, SO-, MY17- and Y-CMV. Local and systemic symptoms caused by three strains, pepo-, SO- and MY17-CMV, and those by Y-CMV differed in the three host species. The three strains expressed local chlorotic spots at 24°C and systemic chlorotic spots and ringspots at 36°C, whereas Y-CMV developed local necrotic spots at 24°C but no systemic symptoms at 36°C in T. expansa. In M. charantia the three strains caused systemic chlorotic spots, whereas Y-CMV caused local necrotic spots. The three caused systemic mosaic and Y-CMV systemic necrosis in P. floridana. With pseudorecombinants combined with pepo- and Y-CMV RNAs, CMV RNA 3 was responsible for symptom expression and systemic infection. Inoculation with Y-CMV RNA 1, RNA 2 and chimeric RNA 3s exchanged CP gene fragments between pepo- and Y-CMV showed that NruI-XhoI fragment of CP was essential for symptom expression. Comparative analysis of the NruI-XhoI fragments revealed that only the amino acid at position 129 was common among the three strains but different from that of Y-CMV. Inoculation with a point mutant constructed by substituting one nucleotide resulting in an amino acid change from Ser to Pro at position 129 in Y-CMV CP verified the previous experiments. These results indicate that the amino acid at position 129 of CMV CP is the determinant for local symptom expression and systemic movement in the three host species. CMV CP containing Ser at position 129 may induce resistant responses in these plants.
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