Molecular Studies of Genetic RNA–RNA Recombination in Brome Mosaic Virus

Jozef J. Bujarski, Peter D. Nagy, Stanislaw Flasinski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations


It is well known that DNA-based organisms rearrange and repair their genomic DNA through recombination processes, and that these rearrangements serve as a powerful source of variability and adaptation for these organisms. In RNA viruses' genetic recombination is defined as any process leading to the exchange of information between viral RNAs. There are two types of recombination events: legitimate and illegitimate. While legitimate (homologous) recombination occurs between closely related sequences at corresponding positions, illegitimate (nonhomologous) recombination could happen at any position among the unrelated RNA molecules. In order to differentiate between the symmetrical and asymmetrical homologous crosses, Lai defined the former as homologous recombination and the latter as aberrant homologous recombination. This chapter uses brome mosaic virus (BMV), a multicomponent plant RNA virus, as an example to discuss the progress in studying the mechanism of genetic recombination in positive-stranded RNA viruses. Studies described in this chapter summarize the molecular approaches used to increase the frequency of recombination among BMV RNA segments and, more importantly, to target the sites of crossovers to specific BMV RNA regions. It demonstrates that the latter can be accomplished by introducing local complementarities to the recombining substrates.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)275-302
Number of pages28
JournalAdvances in Virus Research
Issue numberC
StatePublished - Jan 1 1994

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases


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