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Virology. 1990 Nov;179(1):69-77.

Genetic analysis of tomato golden mosaic virus: ORF AL2 is required for coat protein accumulation while ORF AL3 is necessary for efficient DNA replication.

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  • 1Biotechnology Center, Ohio State University, Columbus 43210.


Tomato golden mosaic virus (TGMV) is a geminivirus whose genome is divided between two DNA components, designated A and B. The TGMV genome contains six open reading frames (ORFs) which can encode proteins of greater than 10 kDa. We have used a protoplast transfection system to determine the effects of viral proteins, as defined by these ORFs, on the accumulation of viral DNA in infected cells. The accumulation of cost protein was also examined in leaf discs. Our results indicate that mutations in ORFs AR1 and AL2 do not affect viral double-stranded DNA (dsDNA) levels, although AR1 and AL2 mutants accumulate only small amounts of single-stranded viral DNA (ssDNA). In contrast, a large reduction in both ss- and dsDNA levels is observed when a mutation is introduced into ORF AL3. Mutations within either of the two DNA B ORFs do not affect DNA replication. The AL3, BR1, and BL1 mutants are capable of synthesizing coat protein; however, coat protein is not detected in leaf discs inoculated with AR1 or AL2 mutants. Testable models are proposed to explain the influence of AL2 protein on coat protein accumulation and to account for the stimulation of viral DNA synthesis mediated by the AL3 gene product.

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