Expression of alfalfa mosaic virus coat protein in tobacco mosaic virus (TMV) deficient in the production of its native coat protein supports long-distance movement of a chimeric TMV.
Alfalfa mosaic virus (AlMV) coat protein is involved in systemic infection of host plants, and a specific mutation in this gene prevents the virus from moving into the upper uninoculated leaves. The coat protein also is required for different viral functions during early and late infection. To study the role of the coat protein in long-distance movement of AlMV independent of other vital functions during virus infection, we cloned the gene encoding the coat protein of AlMV into a tobacco mosaic virus (TMV)-based vector Av. This vector is deficient in long-distance movement and is limited to locally inoculated leaves because of the lack of native TMV coat protein. Expression of AlMV coat protein, directed by the subgenomic promoter of TMV coat protein in Av, supported systemic infection with the chimeric virus in Nicotiana benthamiana, Nicotiana tabacum MD609, and Spinacia oleracea. The host range of TMV was extended to include spinach as a permissive host. Here we report the alteration of a host range by incorporating genetic determinants from another virus. (+info)
A series of tobacco mosaic virus (TMV)-based hybrid vectors for transient gene expression were constructed with similar designs but differing in the source of heterologous tobamovirus sequence: Odontoglossum ringspot virus, tobacco mild green mosaic virus variants U2 and U5, tomato mosaic virus, and sunn-hemp mosaic virus. These vectors contained a heterologous coat protein subgenomic mRNA promoter and coat protein open reading frame (ORF) and either TMV or heterologous 3' nontranslated region. The foreign ORF, from the jellyfish green fluorescent protein (GFP) gene, was transcribed from the native TMV coat protein subgenomic mRNA promoter, which extended into the coat protein ORF. The presence of an in-frame stop codon within the GFP mRNA leader and the choice of sequence of GFP ORFs substantially affected translational efficiency. However, the major regulatory component of gene expression in these vectors appeared to be transcriptional rather than translational. There was an inverse relationship between expression of GFP and the heterologous coat protein genes that was reflected in accumulation of the respective mRNAs and proteins. The most effective vector in this series (30B) contained sequences encoding the coat protein subgenomic mRNA promoter, coat protein ORF, and 3' nontranslated region from tobacco mild green mosaic virus U5. Expressed from 30B, GFP accumulated up to 10% of total soluble protein in leaves. (+info)
Isolation from tobacco mosaic virus-infected tobacco of a solubilized template-specific RNA-dependent RNA polymerase containing a 126K/183K protein heterodimer.
The complete nucleotide sequence was determined for the putative RNA polymerase (183K protein) gene of tobacco mosaic virus (TMV) OM strain, which differed from the related strain, vulgare, by 51 positions in its nucleotide sequence and 6 residues in its amino acid sequence. Three segments of this 183K protein, each containing the sequence motif of methyltransferase (M), helicase (H), or RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (P), were expressed in Escherichia coli as fusion proteins with hexahistidine tags, and domain-specific antibodies were raised against purified His-tagged M and P polypeptides. By immunoaffinity purification, a template-specific RNA-dependent RNA polymerase containing a heterodimer of the full-length 183K and 126K (an amino-terminal-proximal portion of the 183K protein) viral proteins was isolated. We propose that the TMV RNA polymerase for minus-strand RNA synthesis is composed of one molecule each of the 183- and 126-kDa proteins, possibly together with two or more host proteins. (+info)
Homogenization-resistant and -susceptible components of tobacco mosaic virus replicative form RNA.
When prepared from tissue frozen with liquid nitrogen, tobacco mosaic virus replicative form RNA (TMV RF) was uniform in size but when prepared by high-speed homogenization, or when TMV RF prepared with liquid nitrogen was homogenized, 80 to 90% of the RF broke into relatively discrete pieces. The unbroken RF was not fragmented by additional homogenization. The TMV RF components susceptible and resistant to breakage, respectively, were synthesized with similar kinetics in relation to length of labelling period, but the slightly more resistant component was synthesized during the early infection period. Both components were produced by different strains of TMV but leaves infected with cowpea chlorotic mottle or southern bean mosaic viruses yielded only RF resistant to breakage. TMV replicative intermediate RNA was also broken by homogenization. The occurrence of the two RF components may be of significance in the replication of RNA viruses. (+info)
Inverse relationship between systemic resistance of plants to microorganisms and to insect herbivory.
Pre-inoculation of plants with a pathogen that induces necrosis leads to the development of systemic acquired resistance (SAR) to subsequent pathogen attack . The phenylpropanoid-derived compound salicylic acid (SA) is necessary for the full expression of both local resistance and SAR  . A separate signaling pathway involving jasmonic acid (JA) is involved in systemic responses to wounding and insect herbivory  . There is evidence both supporting and opposing the idea of cross-protection against microbial pathogens and insect herbivores  . This is a controversial area because pharmacological experiments point to negative cross-talk between responses to systemic pathogens and responses to wounding   , although this has not been demonstrated functionally in vivo. Here, we report that reducing phenylpropanoid biosynthesis by silencing the expression of phenylalanine ammonialyase (PAL) reduces SAR to tobacco mosaic virus (TMV), whereas overexpression of PAL enhances SAR. Tobacco plants with reduced SAR exhibited more effective grazing-induced systemic resistance to larvae of Heliothis virescens, but larval resistance was reduced in plants with elevated phenylpropanoid levels. Furthermore, genetic modification of components involved in phenylpropanoid synthesis revealed an inverse relationship between SA and JA levels. These results demonstrate phenylpropanoid-mediated cross-talk in vivo between microbially induced and herbivore-induced pathways of systemic resistance. (+info)
Milestones in the research on tobacco mosaic virus.
Beijerinck's (1898) recognition that the cause of tobacco mosaic disease was a novel kind of pathogen became the breakthrough which eventually led to the establishment of virology as a science. Research on this agent, tobacco mosaic virus (TMV), has continued to be at the forefront of virology for the past century. After an initial phase, in which numerous biological properties of TMV were discovered, its particles were the first shown to consist of RNA and protein, and X-ray diffraction analysis of their structure was the first of a helical nucleoprotein. In the molecular biological phase of research, TMV RNA was the first plant virus genome to be sequenced completely, its genes were found to be expressed by cotranslational particle disassembly and the use of subgenomic mRNA, and the mechanism of assembly of progeny particles from their separate parts was discovered. Molecular genetical and cell biological techniques were then used to clarify the roles and modes of action of the TMV non-structural proteins: the 126 kDa and 183 kDa replicase components and the 30 kDa cell-to-cell movement protein. Three different TMV genes were found to act as avirulence genes, eliciting hypersensitive responses controlled by specific, but different, plant genes. One of these (the N gene) was the first plant gene controlling virus resistance to be isolated and sequenced. In the biotechnological sphere, TMV has found several applications: as the first source of transgene sequences conferring virus resistance, in vaccines consisting of TMV particles genetically engineered to carry foreign epitopes, and in systems for expressing foreign genes. TMV owes much of its popularity as a research mode to the great stability and high yield of its particles. Although modern methods have much decreased the need for such properties, and TMV may have a less dominant role in the future, it continues to occupy a prominent position in both fundamental and applied research. (+info)
The tobacco mosaic virus particle: structure and assembly.
A short account is given of the physical and chemical studies that have led to an understanding of the structure of the tobacco mosaic virus particle and how it is assembled from its constituent coat protein and RNA. The assembly is a much more complex process than might have been expected from the simplicity of the helical design of the particle. The protein forms an obligatory intermediate (a cylindrical disk composed of two layers of protein units), which recognizes a specific RNA hairpin sequence. This extraordinary mechanism simultaneously fulfils the physical requirement for nucleating the growth of the helical particle and the biological requirement for specific recognition of the viral DNA. (+info)
Self-assembly of tobacco mosaic virus: the role of an intermediate aggregate in generating both specificity and speed.
The tobacco mosaic virus (TMV) particle was the first macromolecular structure to be shown to self-assemble in vitro, allowing detailed studies of the mechanism. Nucleation of TMV self-assembly is by the binding of a specific stem-loop of the single-stranded viral RNA into the central hole of a two-ring sub-assembly of the coat protein, known as the 'disk'. Binding of the loop onto its specific binding site, between the two rings of the disk, leads to melting of the stem so more RNA is available to bind. The interaction of the RNA with the protein subunits in the disk cause this to dislocate into a proto-helix, rearranging the protein subunits in such a way that the axial gap between the rings at inner radii closes, entrapping the RNA. Assembly starts at an internal site on TMV RNA, about 1 kb from its 3'-terminus, and the elongation in the two directions is different. Elongation of the nucleated rods towards the 5'-terminus occurs on a 'travelling loop' of the RNA and, predominantly, still uses the disk sub-assembly of protein subunits, consequently incorporating approximately 100 further nucleotides as each disk is added, while elongation towards the 3'-terminus uses smaller protein aggregates and does not show this 'quantized' incorporation. (+info)