Mar. 6, 2018
Researchers from the National Institute of Agricultural Technology (INTA) jointly with the Leloir Institute Foundation identified a new virus that was proposed as a member of the Geminiviridae family.
It is a pathogen that infects the tomato plants that could generate income losses on horticultural crops. The breakthrough implies changes on the strategy in the ecosystems that contains these crops.
The characterization of this pathogen, called ToALCV, was published recently in the Frontiers in Microbiology
magazine. “ToALCV generates symptoms on leaves, fruits and roots of tomatoes”, indicated Gastón Vaghi Medina, co-author of the article and researcher at the Vegetable Pathology of INTA in Córdoba and added, “The furl can be observed yellowing among the nerves with the deformation of leaves and a severe hypertrophy of the roots”.
“The symptoms on roots were very remarkable, something that is not very common on viral infections,” Medina expressed. Based on this, he considered it very likely that “this malformation reduces the capacity that the root absorbs and transports nutrients to the aerial part, which can have consequences on production.”
During the tests conducted in the laboratory, the researchers achieved reproduction of the symptoms and confirmed its capacity to infect. “The plants were infected after applying a technique of inoculation through bioballistics that use the genome virus DNA that has an apparel named DNA tube,” Medina explained.
Another important characteristic of ToALCV, Media explained is, “it did not seem to be like any of the viruses described until the moment.” The result was achieved after comparing the sequence of genome virus based on the world database “GenBank”.
“The genome has circular single-stranded DNA, a characteristic of all the geminivirus that infect the tomato in Argentina until the moment,” the co-author explained.
The researchers can still identify the vector. Based on bioinformatics that could determine the vector of ToALCV, it could be Ceresa Taurina, which would need proof of biological transmission.