Comparison of nucleotide sequences between northern and southern philippine isolates of rice grassy stunt virus indicates occurrence of natural genetic reassortment.
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Rice grassy stunt virus is a member of the genus Tenuivirus, is persistently transmitted by a brown planthopper, and has occurred in rice plants in South, Southeast, and East Asia (similar to North and South America). We determined the complete nucleotide (nt) sequences of RNAs 1 (9760 nt), 2 (4069 nt), 3 (3127 nt), 4 (2909 nt), 5 (2704 nt), and 6 (2590 nt) of a southern Philippine isolate from South Cotabato and compared them with those of a northern Philippine isolate from Laguna (Toriyama et al., 1997 1998). The numbers of nucleotides in the terminal untranslated regions and open reading frames were identical between the two isolates except for the 5' untranslated region of the complementary strand of RNA 4. Overall nucleotide differences between the two isolates were only 0.08% in RNA 1, 0.58% in RNA 4, and 0.26% in RNA 5, whereas they were 2.19% in RNA 2, 8.38% in RNA 3, and 3.63% in RNA 6. In the intergenic regions, the two isolates differed by 9.12% in RNA 2, 11.6% in RNA 3, and 6.86% in RNA 6 with multiple consecutive nucleotide deletion/insertions, whereas they differed by only 0.78% in RNA 4 and 0.34% in RNA 5. The nucleotide variation in the intergenic region of RNA 6 within the South Cotabato isolate was only 0.33%. These differences in accumulation of mutations among individual RNA segments indicate that there was genetic reassortment in the two geographical isolates; RNAs 1, 4, and 5 of the two isolates came from a common ancestor, whereas RNAs 2, 3, and 6 were from two different ancestors. (C) 2000 Academic Press.
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