The Effects of Plant Virus Infection on Polarization Reflection from Leaves.
ABSTRACT: Alteration of leaf surface phenotypes due to virus infection has the potential to affect the likelihood of colonisation by insect vectors, or to affect their feeding activities. The aim of this study was to investigate whether viruses that rely on insects for their transmission, and which can be sensitive to the polarization of light, affect the percentage polarization of light reflected from leaves. We also set out to discover whether a correlation exists between the expression of ECERIFERUM (CER) genes involved in cuticular wax synthesis and the polarization of the light reflected from the leaf surfaces. It was found that the aphid-vectored viruses Potato virus Y and Cucumber mosaic virus (CMV) caused significant reductions in the percentage polarization of light reflected from the abaxial surfaces of leaves of Nicotiana tabacum, whereas the non-insect-vectored viruses Tobacco mosaic virus and Pepino mosaic virus did not induce this effect. In Arabidopsis thaliana, there was little difference in the impacts of CMV and the non-insect-vectored Turnip vein clearing virus on polarization reflection, with both viruses increasing the percentage polarization of light reflected from the abaxial surfaces of leaves. There was a trend towards increased accumulation of CER6 transcripts in N. tabacum and A. thaliana when infected with aphid-vectored viruses. No significant effect of infection on trichome densities was found in A. thaliana, suggesting that alterations to the formation of cuticular waxes may be the more likely phenotypic change on the leaf surface contributing to the changes in polarization reflection. The possible impacts and adaptive significance of these effects with regard to viral transmission by insects are discussed.
Project description:The way in which light is polarized when reflected from leaves can be affected by infection with plant viruses. This has the potential to influence viral transmission by insect vectors due to altered visual attractiveness of infected plants. The optical and topological properties of cuticular waxes and trichomes are important determinants of how light is polarized upon reflection. Changes in expression of genes involved in the formation of surface structures have also been reported following viral infection. This paper investigates the role of altered surface structures in virus-induced changes to polarization reflection from leaves. The percentage polarization of reflections from Arabidopsis thaliana cer5, cer6 and cer8 wax synthesis mutants, and the gl1 leaf hair mutant, was compared to those from wild-type (WT) leaves. The cer5 mutant leaves were less polarizing than WT on the adaxial and abaxial surfaces; gl1 leaves were more polarizing than WT on the adaxial surfaces. The cer6 and cer8 mutations did not significantly affect polarization reflection. The impacts of Turnip vein clearing virus (TVCV) infection on the polarization of reflected light were significantly affected by cer5 mutation, with the reflections from cer5 mutants being higher than those from WT leaves, suggesting that changes in CER5 expression following infection could influence the polarization of the reflections. There was, however, no significant effect of the gl1 mutation on polarization following TVCV infection. The cer5 and gl1 mutations did not affect the changes in polarization following Cucumber mosaic virus (CMV) infection. The accumulation of TVCV and CMV did not differ significantly between mutant and WT leaves, suggesting that altered expression of surface structure genes does not significantly affect viral titres, raising the possibility that if such regulatory changes have any adaptive value it may possibly be through impacts on viral transmission.
Project description:Apoptosis is generally considered the first line of defense against viral infection. However, the role of apoptosis in the interactions between plant viruses and their insect vectors has rarely been investigated. By studying plant DNA viruses of the genus Begomovirus within the family Geminiviridae, which are transmitted by whiteflies of the Bemisia tabaci species complex in a persistent manner, we revealed that virus-induced apoptosis in insect vectors can facilitate viral accumulation and transmission. We found that infection with tomato yellow leaf curl virus activated the apoptosis pathway in B. tabaci Suppressing apoptosis by inhibitors or silencing caspase-3 significantly reduced viral accumulation, while the activation of apoptosis increased viral accumulation in vivo Moreover, the positive effect of whitefly apoptosis on virus accumulation and transmission was not due to its cross talk with the autophagy pathway that suppresses begomovirus infection in whiteflies. We further showed that viral replication, rather than the viral coat protein, is likely the critical factor in the activation of apoptosis by the virus. These novel findings indicate that similarly to many animal and a few plant RNA viruses, plant DNA viruses may activate apoptosis in their insect vectors leading to enhanced viral accumulation and transmission.IMPORTANCE Of the approximately 1,100 known plant viruses, about one-third are DNA viruses that are vectored by insects. Plant virus infections often induce cellular and molecular responses in their insect vectors, which can, in many cases, affect the spread of viruses. However, the mechanisms underlying vector responses that affect virus accumulation and transmission are poorly understood. Here, we examined the role of virus-induced apoptosis in the transmission of begomoviruses, a group of single-stranded plant DNA viruses that are transmitted by whiteflies and cause extensive damage to many crops worldwide. We demonstrated that virus infection can induce apoptosis in the insect vector conferring protection to the virions from degradation, leading to enhanced viral accumulation and transmission to host plants. Our findings provide valuable clues for designing new strategies to block the transmission of insect-vectored plant viruses, particularly plant DNA viruses.
Project description:Increased light intensity has been predicted as a major consequence of climate change. Light intensity is a critical resource involved in many plant processes, including the interaction with viruses. A central question to plant-virus interactions is understanding the determinants of virus dispersal among plants. However, very little is known on the effect of environmental factors on virus transmission, particularly through seeds. The fitness of seed-transmitted viruses is highly dependent on host reproductive potential, and requires higher virus multiplication in reproductive organs. Thus, environmental conditions that favor reduced virus virulence without controlling its level of within-plant multiplication (i.e., tolerance) may enhance seed transmission. We tested the hypothesis that light intensity conditions that enhance plant tolerance promote virus seed transmission. To do so, we challenged 18 Arabidopsis thaliana accessions with Turnip mosaic virus (TuMV) and Cucumber mosaic virus (CMV) under high and low light intensity. Results indicated that higher light intensity increased TuMV multiplication and/or plant tolerance, which was associated with more efficient seed transmission. Conversely, higher light intensity reduced plant tolerance and CMV multiplication, and had no effect on seed transmission. This work provides novel insights on how environmental factors modulate plant virus transmission and contributes to understand the underlying processes.
Project description:Understanding the molecular mechanisms involved in plant virus-vector interactions is essential for the development of effective control measures for aphid-vectored epidemic plant diseases. The coat proteins (CP) are the main component of the viral capsids, and they are implicated in practically every stage of the viral infection cycle. Pea enation mosaic virus 1 (PEMV1, Enamovirus, Luteoviridae) and Pea enation mosaic virus 2 (PEMV2, Umbravirus, Tombusviridae) are two RNA viruses in an obligate symbiosis causing the pea enation mosaic disease. Sixteen mutant viruses were generated with mutations in different domains of the CP to evaluate the role of specific amino acids in viral replication, virion assembly, long-distance movement in Pisum sativum, and aphid transmission. Twelve mutant viruses were unable to assemble but were able to replicate in inoculated leaves, move long-distance, and express the CP in newly infected leaves. Four mutant viruses produced virions, but three were not transmissible by the pea aphid, Acyrthosiphon pisum. Three-dimensional modeling of the PEMV CP, combined with biological assays for virion assembly and aphid transmission, allowed for a model of the assembly of PEMV coat protein subunits.
Project description:Although vertical transmission from parents to offspring through seeds is an important fitness component of many plant viruses, very little is known about the factors affecting this process. Viruses reach the seed by direct invasion of the embryo and/or by infection of the ovules or the pollen. Thus, it can be expected that the efficiency of seed transmission would be determined by (i) virus within-host multiplication and movement, (ii) the ability of the virus to invade gametic tissues, (iii) plant seed production upon infection, and (iv) seed survival in the presence of the virus. However, these predictions have seldom been experimentally tested. To address this question, we challenged 18 Arabidopsis thaliana accessions with Turnip mosaic virus and Cucumber mosaic virus Using these plant-virus interactions, we analyzed the relationship between the effect of virus infection on rosette and inflorescence weights; short-, medium-, and long-term seed survival; virulence; the number of seeds produced per plant; virus within-host speed of movement; virus accumulation in the rosette and inflorescence; and efficiency of seed transmission measured as a percentage and as the total number of infected seeds. Our results indicate that the best estimators of percent seed transmission are the within-host speed of movement and multiplication in the inflorescence. Together with these two infection traits, virulence and the number of seeds produced per infected plant were also associated with the number of infected seeds. Our results provide support for theoretical predictions and contribute to an understanding of the determinants of a process central to plant-virus interactions.IMPORTANCE One of the major factors contributing to plant virus long-distance dispersal is the global trade of seeds. This is because more than 25% of plant viruses can infect seeds, which are the main mode of germplasm exchange/storage, and start new epidemics in areas where they were not previously present. Despite the relevance of this process for virus epidemiology and disease emergence, the infection traits associated with the efficiency of virus seed transmission are largely unknown. Using turnip mosaic and cucumber mosaic viruses and their natural host Arabidopsis thaliana as model systems, we have identified the within-host speed of virus colonization and multiplication in the reproductive structures as the main determinants of the efficiency of seed transmission. These results contribute to shedding light on the mechanisms by which plant viruses disperse and optimize their fitness and may help in the design of more-efficient strategies to prevent seed infection.
Project description:The control of insect borne disease is recognized as one of the major agricultural, animal and human health challenges of today. Viruses in the family Luteoviridae are phloem-limited, plant viruses that are vectored by aphids in a circulative manner. They are responsible for a wide-range of economically important disease in almost all staple food crops. In order to be transmitted, these viruses require species-specific passage of the pathogen across several membrane barriers within the insect. After the pathogen is ingested from the sap of an infected plant, the virus moves across and through the aphid gut into the hemoceol (insect blood) where it circulates until it reaches and enters the main or accessory salivary glands. From here, the pathogen is injected into a new plant host when the aphid feeds. The identification of insect proteins that interact with circulative plant viruses is technically challenging and a major goal for the plant vector biology field. Such information is critical to develop novel control strategies that block virus transmission by insects. In this study, we used affinity purification-high-resolution mass spectrometry (AP-MS) to rapidly capture and identify aphid proteins in complex with Potato leafroll virus (PLRV), a luteovirid transmitted by the green peach aphid (Myzus persicae), directly from viruliferous aphid tissue.
Project description:In the past decade, there has been an upsurge in the number of newly described insect-specific flaviviruses isolated pan-globally. We recently described the isolation of a novel flavivirus (tentatively designated 'Nhumirim virus'; NHUV) that represents an example of a unique subset of apparently insect-specific viruses that phylogenetically affiliate with dual-host mosquito-borne flaviviruses despite appearing to be limited to replication in mosquito cells. We characterized the in vitro growth potential and 3' untranslated region (UTR) sequence homology with alternative flaviviruses, and evaluated the virus's capacity to suppress replication of representative Culex spp.-vectored pathogenic flaviviruses in mosquito cells. Only mosquito cell lines were found to support NHUV replication, further reinforcing the insect-specific phenotype of this virus. Analysis of the sequence and predicted RNA secondary structures of the 3' UTR indicated NHUV to be most similar to viruses within the yellow fever serogroup and Japanese encephalitis serogroup, and viruses in the tick-borne flavivirus clade. NHUV was found to share the fewest conserved sequence elements when compared with traditional insect-specific flaviviruses. This suggests that, despite apparently being insect specific, this virus probably diverged from an ancestral mosquito-borne flavivirus. Co-infection experiments indicated that prior or concurrent infection of mosquito cells with NHUV resulted in a significant reduction in virus production of West Nile virus (WNV), St Louis encephalitis virus (SLEV) and Japanese encephalitis virus. The inhibitory effect was most effective against WNV and SLEV with over a 10(6)-fold and 10(4)-fold reduction in peak titres, respectively.
Project description:Oilseed rape mosaic virus (ORMV) is a tobamovirus taxonomically distinct from the type member of the genus, Tobacco mosaic virus (TMV). Both viruses display a specific host range, although they share certain hosts, such as Arabidopsis thaliana, Nicotiana benthamiana and N. tabacum, on which they induce different symptoms. Using a gain-of-symptom approach, we generated chimeric viruses, starting from a TMV infectious clone, over which different regions of ORMV were exchanged with their corresponding regions in the TMV genome. This approach allowed the association of pathogenicity determinants to certain genes within the ORMV genome. A general trend was observed associating the viral origin of the RNA-dependent RNA-polymerase (RdRp) gene and the gain of symptoms. In A. thaliana and N. benthamiana, chimeric viruses were unable to reproduce the symptoms induced by the parental viruses, leading to disease states which could be described as intermediate, and variable in some cases. In contrast, a hypersensitive reaction caused by both of these viruses on N-gene-bearing tobaccos could be found in resistance reactions to all chimeric viruses, suggesting that the avirulence determinant maps similarly in both viruses. A systemic necrotic spotting typical of non-N-gene tobaccos infected with ORMV was associated with the polymerase domain of RdRp. To our knowledge, this is the first time that this controversial portion of the tobamovirus genome has been identified directly as a pathogenicity determinant. None of the reactions of the chimeric viruses could be correlated with increases or decreases in virus titres in the infections.
Project description:Endocytosis and endosomal trafficking regulate the proteins targeted to the plasma membrane and play essential roles in diverse cellular processes, including responses to pathogen attack. Here, we report the identification of Glycine max (soybean) endocytosis dynamin-like protein 5A (GmSDL5A) associated with purified soybean mosaic virus (SMV) virions from soybean using a bottom-up proteomics approach. Knockdown of GmSDL5A and its homologous gene GmSDL12A inhibits SMV infection in soybean. The role of analogous dynamin-like proteins in potyvirus infection was further confirmed and investigated using the Arabidopsis/turnip mosaic virus (TuMV) pathosystem. We demonstrate that dynamin-related proteins 2A and 2B in Arabidopsis thaliana (AtDRP2A, AtDRP2B), homologs of GmSDL5A, are recruited to the virus replication complex (VRC) of TuMV. TuMV infection is inhibited in both A. thaliana drp2a (atdrp2a) and atdrp2b knockout mutants. Overexpression of AtDRP2 promotes TuMV replication and intercellular movement. AtRDP2 interacts with TuMV VPg, CP, CI, and 6K2. Of these viral proteins, VPg, CP, and CI are essential for viral intercellular movement, and 6K2, VPg, and CI are critical components of the VRC. We reveal that VPg and CI are present in the punctate structures labeled by the endocytic tracer FM4-64, suggesting that VPg and CI can be endocytosed. Treatment of plant leaves with a dynamin-specific inhibitor disrupts the delivery of VPg and CI to endocytic structures and suppresses TuMV replication and intercellular movement. Taken together, these data suggest that dynamin-like proteins are novel host factors of potyviruses and that endocytic processes are involved in potyvirus infection.IMPORTANCE It is well known that animal viruses enter host cells via endocytosis, whereas plant viruses require physical assistance, such as human and insect activities, to penetrate the host cell to establish their infection. In this study, we report that the endocytosis pathway is also involved in virus infection in plants. We show that plant potyviruses recruit endocytosis dynamin-like proteins to support their infection. Depletion of them by knockout of the corresponding genes suppresses virus replication, whereas overexpression of them enhances virus replication and intercellular movement. We also demonstrate that the dynamin-like proteins interact with several viral proteins that are essential for virus replication and cell-to-cell movement. We further show that treatment of a dynamin-specific inhibitor disrupts endocytosis and inhibits virus replication and intercellular movement. Therefore, the dynamin-like proteins are novel host factors of potyviruses. The corresponding genes may be manipulated using advanced biotechnology to control potyviral diseases.
Project description:Plant viruses often harm their hosts, which have developed mechanisms to prevent or minimize the effects of virus infection. Resistance and tolerance are the two main plant defences to pathogens. Although resistance to plant viruses has been studied extensively, tolerance has received much less attention. Theory predicts that tolerance to low-virulent parasites would be achieved through resource reallocation from growth to reproduction, whereas tolerance to high-virulent parasites would be attained through shortening of the pre-reproductive period. We have shown previously that the tolerance of Arabidopsis thaliana to Cucumber mosaic virus (CMV), a relatively low-virulent virus in this host, accords to these predictions. However, whether other viruses trigger the same response, and how A. thaliana copes with highly virulent virus infections remains unexplored. To address these questions, we challenged six A. thaliana wild genotypes with five viruses with different genomic structures, life histories and transmission modes. In these plants, we quantified virus multiplication, virulence, and the effects of infection on plant growth and reproduction, and on the developmental schedule. Our results indicate that virus multiplication varies according to the virus × host genotype interaction. Conversely, effective tolerance is observed only on CMV infection, and is associated with resource reallocation from growth to reproduction. Tolerance to the other viruses is observed only in specific host-virus combinations and, at odds with theoretical predictions, is linked to longer pre-reproductive periods. These findings only partially agree with theoretical predictions, and contribute to a better understanding of pathogenic processes in plant-virus interactions.