Properties of cocksfoot streak and cocksfoot cryptic, two viruses infecting cocksfoot (Dactylis glomerata) in Scotland


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A Scottish isolate of cocksfoot streak virus (CSV‐S) was found to have flexuous filamentous particles which, in sap of infected cocksfoot plants, had a modal length of 712 nm. It was transmitted from infected to healthy cocksfoot plants in a non‐persistent manner by Myzus persicae and by mechanical inoculation of infective sap extracts containing an anti‐oxidant. Apart from cocksfoot, mechanical inoculation of infective sap succeeded in infecting only four of 22 plant species tested. The infectivity of sap extracts containing 0.2% thioglycerol was lost after heating for 10 min at 55oC but not 50oC, storage at room temperature for 48 but not 24 hours, and after diluting 10‐2to 10‐3. Highly purified preparations of CSV‐S particles sedimented as a single component with a sedimentation coefficient of 139S and had a buoyant density in rubidium bromide of 1.31 g/cm3. Virus particles were composed of one protein and one ssRNA species with estimated Mr of 31 000 and 3.2 times 106respectively. In ELISA, an antiserum prepared to CSV‐S detected the virus in all aerial parts of infected cocksfoot plants and, when present in the ratio of 1 infected leaf: 1000 healthy leaves. Both CSV‐S‐infected and ‐uninfected cocksfoot also contained a previously undescribed virus with isometric particles c. 30 nm in diameter. This virus, named cocksfoot cryptic virus (CCV), was seed‐borne in two cvs of cocksfoot tested and its particles contained two dsRNA species of estimated Mr of 1.14 times 106and 1.27 times 106. Despite the fact that particles of CSV‐S were largely free from CCV particles following exclusion chromatography on agarose beads prior to immunisation, immunoelectron microscopy (IEM) showed that the antiserum prepared to CSV‐S also contained some antibodies to CCV. Evidence from IEM suggested a possible distant serological relationship of CCV to ryegrass and beet (BCV 1 or BCV 2, or both) cryptoviruses, all members of sub‐group A of crypto viruses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)267-281
Number of pages15
JournalAnnals of Applied Biology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1994


  • aphid transmission
  • cocksfoot cryptic virus
  • Cocksfoot streak potyvirus
  • cryptoviruses
  • Dactylis glomerata
  • dsRNA
  • seed transmission


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