Reports

Attenuation of fungal virulence by synthetic infectious hypovirus transcripts

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Science  17 Jun 1994:
Vol. 264, Issue 5166, pp. 1762-1764
DOI: 10.1126/science.8209256

Abstract

Noninfectious, cytoplasmically transmissible viral double-stranded RNAs of the genus Hypovirus cause reduced virulence (hypovirulence) in the chestnut blight fungus Cryphonectria parasitica, providing the basis for virus-mediated biological control of a fungal disease. Synthetic transcripts corresponding to a full-length hypovirus RNA coding strand are infectious when introduced into fungal spheroplasts by electroporation. Hypovirus infections were readily established in Cryphonectria parasitica and in related fungal species not previously reported to harbor viruses. These results demonstrate the use of a synthetic mycovirus transcript to expand fungal host range, thereby broadening the potential application of virus-mediated hypovirulence to control fungal pathogenesis.