Skip to main content
ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Salinas, California » Crop Improvement and Protection Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #325036

Research Project: Biology, Epidemiology and Management of Vector-Borne Viruses of Sugarbeet and Vegetable Crops

Location: Crop Improvement and Protection Research

Title: Squash mosaic virus

Author
item Wintermantel, William - Bill

Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/14/2017
Publication Date: 6/15/2017
Citation: Wintermantel, W.M. 2017. Squash mosaic virus. In: Keinath, A.P., Wintermantel, W.M., Zitter, T.A., editors. Compendium of Cucurbit Diseases and Pests. 2nd edition. St. Paul, MN: APS Press. p. 135-136.

Interpretive Summary: Squash mosaic virus (SqMV) is known to occur in several countries where infected seed provides a very effective means of local and long-distance dissemination. Although SqMV has impacted cucurbit production for nearly a century the extensive usage of virus-free seed has greatly reduced its economic importance. Infected plants respond with a variety of symptoms, including green veinbanding, mosaic, mottle, blisters, ring spots, and protrusion of veins at the leaf margin. Under certain environmental conditions foliar enations can develop. SqMV is a member of the genus Comovirus. The genome is divided into two single-stranded RNA molecules, with each of the RNAs separately packaged into virus particles 28 to 30 nm in diameter. Studies have demonstrated virus infectivity can persist at high titer in plant sap stored at room temperature for 6 weeks and in frozen sap for more than 5 years. Reliable detection can be achieved with ELISA or RT-PCR. The major insect vectors of SqMV are the western striped cucumber beetle (Acalymma trivittatum), and the spotted cucumber beetle, (Diabrotica undecimpunctata howardi). These species acquire the virus within 5 min and can retain it for approximately 20 days. Seed transmission is an important means of dissemination, and rates usually range from 0.14 to 10%, but a much higher percentage has been recorded. Experimentally, SqMV can infect plants in 15 species in 11 genera, but its natural host range is confined predominantly to the Cucurbitaceae and some members of the Chenopodiaceae. No information is available regarding resistance in watermelon and cucumber. Resistance has been reported in Cucumis metuliferus and Lagenaria siceraria. Resistance to SqMV has also been developed using genetic engineering.

Technical Abstract: Squash mosaic virus (SqMV) is known to occur in several countries where infected seed provides a very effective means of local and long-distance dissemination. Although SqMV has impacted cucurbit production for nearly a century the extensive usage of virus-free seed has greatly reduced its economic importance. Infected plants respond with a variety of symptoms, including green veinbanding, mosaic, mottle, blisters, ring spots, and protrusion of veins at the leaf margin. Under certain environmental conditions foliar enations can develop. SqMV is a member of the genus Comovirus. The genome is divided into two single-stranded RNA molecules, with each of the RNAs separately packaged into virus particles 28 to 30 nm in diameter. Studies have demonstrated virus infectivity can persist at high titer in plant sap stored at room temperature for 6 weeks and in frozen sap for more than 5 years. Reliable detection can be achieved with ELISA or RT-PCR. The major insect vectors of SqMV are the western striped cucumber beetle (Acalymma trivittatum), and the spotted cucumber beetle, (Diabrotica undecimpunctata howardi). These species acquire the virus within 5 min and can retain it for approximately 20 days. Seed transmission is an important means of dissemination, and rates usually range from 0.14 to 10%, but a much higher percentage has been recorded. Experimentally, SqMV can infect plants in 15 species in 11 genera, but its natural host range is confined predominantly to the Cucurbitaceae and some members of the Chenopodiaceae. No information is available regarding resistance in watermelon and cucumber. Resistance has been reported in Cucumis metuliferus and Lagenaria siceraria. Resistance to SqMV has also been developed using genetic engineering.