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Adv Virus Res. 2013;86:215-48. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-12-394315-6.00008-8.

Viruses of the plant pathogenic fungus Sclerotinia sclerotiorum.

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The State Key Lab of Agricultural Microbiology, Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan, Hubei Province, PR China


Sclerotinia sclerotiorum is a notorious plant fungal pathogen with a broad host range including many important crops, such as oilseed rape, soybean, and numerous vegetable crops. Hypovirulence-associated mycoviruses have attracted much attention because of their potential as biological control agents for combating plant fungal diseases and for use in fundamental studies on fungal pathogenicity and other properties. This chapter describes several mycoviruses that were isolated from hypovirulent strains except for strain Sunf-M, which has a normal phenotype. These viruses include the geminivirus-like mycovirus Sclerotinia sclerotiorum hypovirulence-associated DNA virus 1 (SsHADV-1), Sclerotinia debilitation-associated RNA virus (SsDRV), Sclerotinia sclerotiorum RNA virus L (SsRV-L), Sclerotinia sclerotiorum hypovirus 1 (SsHV-1), Sclerotinia sclerotiorum mitoviruses 1 and 2 (SsMV-1, SsMV-2), and Sclerotinia sclerotiorum partitivirus S (SsPV-S). Unlike many other fungi, incidences of mixed infections with two or more mycoviruses in S. sclerotiorum are particularly high and very common. The interaction between SsDRV and S. sclerotiorum is likely to be unique. The significance of these mycoviruses to fungal ecology and viral evolution and the potential for biological control of Sclerotinia diseases using mycoviruses are discussed.

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