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Presence of double-stranded RNA and virus-like particles in Rhizopus isolates

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Fungal isolates belonging to four Rhizopus species were screened for the presence of double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) molecules. Five (two R. stolonifer, two R. microsporus, and one R. oryzae) of the 27 isolates examined harboured such genetic elements. Electrophoresis of the nucleic acids revealed five RNA patterns, with 1–5 discrete dsRNA bands. The molecular sizes corresponding to these bands were 2.2–14.8 kb. Gel electrophoresis of purified virus-like particles (VLPs) indicated only one capsid of similar size in all virus-harbouring strains; when investigated by electron microscopy, they were found to be polyhedral VLPs 40 nm in diameter. In one of the R. microsporus isolates an uncapsidated large dsRNA segment (14.8 kb) was observed. No phenotypic differences were observed between uninfected and virus-harbouring Rhizopus isolates.Key words: dsRNA, mycovirus, Rhizopus, VLP.

Des isolats de champignons appartenant à l'espèce Rhizopus ont été criblés pour la présence de molécules d'ARN double-brin (ARNdb). Cinq des 27 isolats étudiés (deux R. stolonifer, deux R. microsporus et un R. oryzae) renfermaient de tels éléments génétiques. L'électrophorèse des acides nucléiques a révélé 5 motifs, ayant de 1 à 5 bandes d'ARNdb distinctes. Les tailles moléculaires correspondant à ces bandes allaient de 2,2 à 14,8 kb. L'électrophorèse sur gel des particules semblables à des virus (VLPs – « virus-like particles ») a mis en évidence une seule capside de taille semblable dans toutes les souches renfermant des virus. Des analyses sous microscope électronique nous ont permis de constater que les particules étaient des VLP polyédriques de 40 nm de diamètre. Dans un des isolats de R. microsporus, la présence de gros ARNdb non capsidés (14,8 kb) était probable. Aucune différence phénotypique ne fut observée entre les isolats de Rhizopus non infectés et ceux renfermant des virus.Mots clés : ARNdb, mycovirus, Rhizopus, VLP.[Traduit par la Rédaction]

Keywords: ARNdb; Rhizopus; VLP; dsRNA; mycovirus

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2001-05-01

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  • Published since 1954, this monthly journal contains new research in the field of microbiology including applied microbiology and biotechnology; microbial structure and function; fungi and other eucaryotic protists; infection and immunity; microbial ecology; physiology, metabolism and enzymology; and virology, genetics, and molecular biology. It also publishes review articles and notes on an occasional basis, contributed by recognized scientists worldwide.
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