Generally, each member of the group has certain hosts in which the virus can spread systemically, causing mosaic or mottling symptoms, and other hosts in which the infection is confined to local lesions. Stunting of the host plant is sometimes observed, as is occasional systemic wilting and seed discoloration.
Infection of plant cells with comoviruses results in a number of characteristic cytological changes. These include the appearance of viral particles, either individually or as crystalline arrays, in the cytoplasm, a proliferation of cell membranes and vesicles in the cytoplasm, the appearance of amorphous inclusion bodies near or surrounding the nucleus and a variety of modifications to plasmodesmata. In the case of CPMV, the ability to cause membrane proliferation has been shown to be associated with RNAl.
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