Virus tolerance and recovery from viral induced-symptoms in plants are associated with transcriptome reprograming

Louis Bengyella, Sayanika D. Waikhom, Farhahna Allie, Chrissie Rey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


Plant recovery from viral infection is characterized by initial severe systemic symptoms which progressively decrease, leading to reduced symptoms or symptomless leaves at the apices. A key feature to plant recovery from invading nucleic acids such as viruses is the degree of the host’s initial basal immunity response. We review current links between RNA silencing, recovery and tolerance, and present a model in which, in addition to regulation of resistance (R) and other defence-related genes by RNA silencing, viral infections incite perturbations of the host physiological state that trigger reprogramming of host responses to by-pass severe symptom development, leading to partial or complete recovery. Recovery, in particular in perennial hosts, may trigger tolerance or virus accommodation. We discuss evidence suggesting that plant viruses can avoid total clearance but persistently replicate at low levels, thereby modulating the host transcriptome response which minimizes fitness cost and triggers recovery from viral-symptoms. In some cases a susceptible host may fail to recover from initial viral systemic symptoms, yet, accommodates the persistent virus throughout the life span, a phenomenon herein referred to as non-recovery accommodation, which differs from tolerance in that there is no distinct recovery phase, and differs from susceptibility in that the host is not killed. Recent advances in plant recovery from virus-induced symptoms involving host transcriptome reprogramming are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)243-252
Number of pages10
JournalPlant molecular biology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Oct 29 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Genetics
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Plant Science


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