Alfalfa mosaic and cucumber mosaic virus infection in chickpea and lentil: Incidence and seed transmission

R. A.C. Jones, B. A. Coutts

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Samples collected in 1994 and 1995 from commercial crops of chickpeas and lentils growing in the agricultural region of south-west Western Australia were tested for infection with alfalfa mosaic (AMV) and cucumber mosaic (CMV) viruses, and for members of the family Potyviridae using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). In 1994 no virus was detected in the 21 chickpea crops tested but in 1995, out of 42 crops, AMV was found in two and CMV in seven. With lentils, AMV and/or CMV was found in three out of 14 crops in 1994 and 4 out of 13 in 1995, both viruses being detected in two crops in each year. Similar tests on samples from chickpea and lentil crops and plots growing at experimental sites, revealed more frequent infection with both viruses. No potyvirus infection was found in chickpeas or lentils in agricultural areas either in commercial crops or at experimental sites. However, bean yellow mosaic virus (BYMV) was detected along with AMV and CMV in irrigated plots of chickpeas and lentils at a site in Perth. When samples of seed from infected crops or plots of chickpeas and lentils were germinated and leaves or roots of seedlings tested for virus infection by ELISA, AMV and CMV were found to be seed-borne in both while BYMV was seedborne in lentils. The rates of transmission found through seed of chickpea to seedlings were 0.1-1% with AMV and 0.1-2% with CMV. Seed transmission rates with lentil were 0.1-5% for AMV, 0.1-1% for CMV and 0.8% for BYMV. Individual seed samples of lentil and chickpea sometimes contained both AMV and CMV. With both species, infection with AMV and CMV was sometimes found in commercial seed stocks or seed stocks from multiplication crops of advanced selections nearing release as new cultivars. Seed-borne virus infection has important practical implications, as virus sources can be re-introduced every year to chickpea and lentil crops or plots through sowing infected seed stocks leading to spread of infection by aphid vectors, losses in grain yield and further contamination of seed stocks.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)491-506
Number of pages16
JournalAnnals of Applied Biology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1996
Externally publishedYes


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