Isolation and Diagnosis of Virus Through Indicator Hosts

  • Alangar Ishwara Bhat
  • Govind Pratap Rao
Part of the Springer Protocols Handbooks book series (SPH)


Isolation followed by propagation of viruses is the first step in the characterization of a virus. Under natural field conditions, plants may be infected with more than one virus and other pathogens. Hence, it is important to isolate the virus in question under in vitro or glasshouse condition. This is usually done by inoculating the field-collected samples onto a host that produce local lesion symptoms. Inoculation may be done by mechanical means using sap extracted from infected plants or through vectors (if virus in question is not mechanically transmitted). Pure culture of the virus isolate is then made by inoculating single local lesion on to hosts that produce either local or systemic symptoms. Pure culture of the virus is inoculated (either mechanically or through vectors) onto a set of diagnostic hosts that are known to produce characteristic symptoms that would help in the identification of the causal virus.

Key words

Diagnosis Indicator host Local lesion host Mechanical transmission Propagation host Pure culture Systemic host Vector transmission 


  1. Dijkstra J, de Jager CP (1998) Practical plant virology: protocols and exercises. Springer, AmsterdamCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Hill SA (1984) Methods in plant virology. Blackwell, OxfordGoogle Scholar
  3. Hull R (2014) Matthews’ plant virology, 5th edn. Academic, San DiegoGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alangar Ishwara Bhat
    • 1
  • Govind Pratap Rao
    • 2
  1. 1.Division of Crop ProtectionICAR-Indian Institute of Spices ResearchKozhikodeIndia
  2. 2.Division of Plant PathologyICAR-Indian Agricultural Research InstituteNew DelhiIndia

Personalised recommendations