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Methods Mol Biol. 2015;1236:61-72. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4939-1743-3_6.

Real-time PCR protocols for the quantification of the begomovirus tomato yellow leaf curl Sardinia virus in tomato plants and in its insect vector.

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Institute for Sustainable Plant Protection (IPSP), National Research Council (CNR), Strada delle Cacce 73, 10135, Torino, Italy,


Tomato yellow leaf curl Sardinia virus (TYLCSV) (Geminiviridae) is an important pathogen, transmitted by the whitefly Bemisia tabaci, that severely affects the tomato production in the Mediterranean basin. Here, we describe real-time PCR protocols suitable for relative and absolute quantification of TYLCSV in tomato plants and in whitefly extracts. Using primers and probe specifically designed for TYLCSV, the protocols for relative quantification allow to compare the amount of TYLCSV present in different plant or whitefly samples, normalized to the amount of DNA present in each sample using endogenous tomato or Bemisia genes as internal references. The absolute quantification protocol allows to calculate the number of genomic units of TYLCSV over the genomic units of the plant host (tomato), with a sensitivity of as few as ten viral genome copies per sample. The described protocols are potentially suitable for several applications, such as plant breeding for resistance, analysis of virus replication, and virus-vector interaction studies.

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