Submitted to: Phytopathology
Publication Type: Peer reviewed journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/20/2005
Publication Date: 9/1/2005
Citation: Tzanetakis, I.E., Postman, J.D., Martin, R.R. 2005. Characterization of a novel member of the closteroviridae family from mentha. Phytopathology. 95(9):1043-1048. Interpretive Summary: In an effort to understand the cause of variegation in mint, a broad spectrum test was conducted to look for viruses in the ornamental mint 'Variegata' which is also sold under the name 'Golden Ginger'. Clones with a bright yellow vein-banding symptom were found to be infected with three viruses, strawberry latent ringspot virus, and two new viruses. A clone that was submitted as 'Variegata' that had more crinkling of the leaves than vein-banding tested negative for the above three viruses. Further tests on this clone showed it was infected with two additional new viruses, one of which is a closterovirus that we designated as Mint virus 1 (MV 1). We have sequenced MV 1 and it has similarities to aphid-transmitted members of the closterovirus family. In transmission studies the virus was vectored by the mint aphid. The virus was identified in commercial mint fields in Oregon. The next step is to determine the impact this virus has on oil production in commercial mint.
Technical Abstract: While characterizing the agents involved in symptomatology of a variegated mint, Mentha × gracilis ‘Variegata’, a nursery plant with atypical symptoms was examined. This plant, unlike ‘Variegata’, did not exhibit yellow vein banding symptoms but instead had distorted and crinkled leaves. Molecular tests for the three viruses found in ‘Variegata’ clones failed to detect any of these viruses in the plant. Double-stranded RNA was extracted and cloned disclosing the presence of two unknown viruses. One of the viruses was a novel member of the Closteroviridae family. The complete nucleotide sequence of the virus, designated as Mint virus 1, has been obtained. Detection tests were developed, and revealed the presence of the virus in several other mint clones and species. Genomic regions from three additional isolates were examined to investigate the genetic diversity of the virus. Genome and phylogenetic analysis placed Mint virus 1 in the Closterovirus genus and transmission studies have identified the mint aphid, Ovatus crataegarius, as a vector for this new Closterovirus.