Global begomovirus structure revealed
doi:10.1038/nindia.2010.126 Published online 15 September 2010
Researchers have revealed for the first time the structure of the global begomovirus population using a model-based genetic approach. Begomovirus is a plant virus mostly affecting dicotyledonous plants across the tropical and sub-tropical regions. The study will help understand the variations in genetic structure of the plant virus and aid in protecting crops.
White-fly is the known carrier of the virus that poses a threat to global food security.
The team has identified 34 genetically distinct sub-populations within the seven earlier known global begomovirus population. They used a novel model-based clustering approach to study population structures within the plant virus genus.
Geographical barriers are known to be the most significant cause of the seven major population sub-divisions. The team explored patterns of gene flow to reveal that both differences in the hot range and genetic barriers to recombination were majorly responsible for the population sub-divisions.
The researchers say the unravelling of the virus population structure could prompt studies on how some parameters of population genetics shape global begomovirus diversity.