Australian monocot-infecting mastrevirus diversity rivals that in Africa

Simona Kraberger, John E. Thomas, Andrew D.W. Geering, Anisha Dayaram, Daisy Stainton, James Hadfield, Matthew Walters, Kathleen S. Parmenter, Sharon van Brunschot, David A. Collings, Darren P. Martin, Arvind Varsani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Monocotyledonous plant infecting mastreviruses (family Geminiviridae) have been found in the Old World. The greatest diversity of these viruses has been found in Africa but this may simply reflect the more extensive sampling that has been done there. To provide a better understanding of mastrevirus diversity in Australia, we have sequenced the genomes of 41 virus isolates found in naturalised and native grasses and identified four new species in addition to the four previously characterised species. Two of these species, which were recovered from a single Sporobolus plant, are highly divergent and are most closely related to the African streak viruses. This, coupled with the discovery of divergent dicotyledonous plant infecting mastreviruses in Australia brings into question the hypothesis that mastreviruses may have originated in Africa. We found that the patterns of inter- and intra-species recombination and the recombination hotspots mirror those found in both their African monocot-infecting counterparts and dicot-infecting mastrevirus.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)127-136
Number of pages10
JournalVirus research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Oct 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Australia
  • Geminivirus
  • Grass
  • Mastrevirus
  • Recombination

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Cancer Research


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