Spread of Cotton Leaf Curl Virus and Related Molecules in Common Cotton Plants

Jenn Hoskins
8th June, 2024

Spread of Cotton Leaf Curl Virus and Related Molecules in Common Cotton Plants

Image Source: Natural Science News, 2024

Key Findings

  • Researchers from Punjab Agricultural University studied cotton leaf curl disease (CLCuD) in South-Western Punjab, India
  • They found that begomovirus isolates from Mansa were closely related to the cotton leaf curl Multan virus (CLCuMuV), while those from Bathinda and Abohar belonged to the CLCuMuV-Rajasthan strain
  • The study identified a single betasatellite species (CLCuMuB) and two types of alphasatellites (CLCuMuA and GDrSLA) associated with CLCuD in the region
Cotton leaf curl disease (CLCuD) poses a significant threat to cotton production worldwide. The disease is caused by begomoviruses, which are transmitted by the whitefly (Bemisia tabaci). These viruses can lead to severe economic losses in regions where cotton is a major crop. In a recent study conducted by the Punjab Agricultural University, researchers monitored and surveyed the South-Western districts of Punjab for CLCuD, aiming to better understand the disease's viral components and their genetic relationships[1]. The study focused on partially sequencing begomoviruses and associated betasatellites and alphasatellites found in infected cotton plants. Begomoviruses are a group of single-stranded DNA viruses within the family Geminiviridae, known to cause various plant diseases. Betasatellites and alphasatellites are subviral components that can influence the severity and symptoms of the disease. The researchers analyzed ten partial sequences to characterize the CLCuD complex in this region. Pairwise sequence analysis revealed that the begomovirus isolates from Mansa were closely related to the cotton leaf curl Multan virus (CLCuMuV), while isolates from Bathinda and Abohar belonged to the CLCuMuV-Rajasthan strain. This finding aligns with previous studies that identified CLCuMuV-Rajasthan as a prevalent strain in certain areas of India[2]. The betasatellite isolates in the study showed 58.8–87.6% nucleotide sequence homology with each other and shared the highest sequence identity with the cotton leaf curl Multan betasatellite (CLCuMuB). This is consistent with earlier findings that indicated the widespread presence of CLCuMuB in regions affected by CLCuD[2]. The alphasatellite isolates from Bakainwala and Muktsar showed maximum nucleotide identity with the cotton leaf curl Multan alphasatellite (CLCuMuA) and the Gossypium darwinii symptomless alphasatellite (GDrSLA), respectively. These results are in line with previous research that identified these alphasatellites as common components in the CLCuD complex[2]. The study's findings contribute to a growing body of knowledge about the diversity and distribution of begomoviruses and their associated satellites. Previous research has highlighted the complexity and variability of these viral components across different regions[3][4]. For instance, a study in Sindh province, Pakistan, identified a new begomovirus, the cotton leaf curl Shahdadpur virus (CLCuShV), which was distinct from the viruses found in the Punjab province[3]. This underscores the importance of regional studies in understanding the full spectrum of begomovirus diversity. The Punjab Agricultural University study also supports the need for revised guidelines for the classification and nomenclature of begomoviruses. Earlier recommendations proposed genome-wide pairwise identities of 91% and 94% as thresholds for distinguishing between different begomovirus species and strains, respectively[5]. The new findings reinforce the utility of these guidelines in accurately categorizing begomovirus isolates. In conclusion, the research conducted by the Punjab Agricultural University provides valuable insights into the genetic diversity of begomoviruses and their associated satellites in the South-Western districts of Punjab. By identifying the specific strains and their relationships, this study enhances our understanding of the CLCuD complex and informs future efforts to manage and control this devastating disease.

GeneticsBiochemPlant Science


Main Study

1) Distribution of cotton leaf curl virus species/strain and characterization of associated satellite molecules in Gossypium hirsutum

Published 7th June, 2024


Related Studies

2) Dominance of recombinant cotton leaf curl Multan-Rajasthan virus associated with cotton leaf curl disease outbreak in northwest India.


3) Cotton leaf curl disease in Sindh province of Pakistan is associated with recombinant begomovirus components.


4) Subviral agents associated with plant single-stranded DNA viruses.

Journal: Virology, Issue: Vol 344, Issue 1, Jan 2006

5) Revision of Begomovirus taxonomy based on pairwise sequence comparisons.


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