Caister Academic Press

Surfacing the role of epigenetics in host-virus interaction

Namisha Sharma, Pranav P Sahu, Ritika Kulshreshtha and Manoj Prasad
from: Genes, Genetics and Transgenics for Virus Resistance in Plants (Edited by: Basavaprabhu L. Patil). Caister Academic Press, U.K. (2018) Pages: 55-86.


Epigenetics is a mechanism which determines the phenotype of an organism by causing heritable (during cell division) but simultaneously reversible alterations/variations in gene expression. It is not related to alterations in the DNA sequence of the genotype. Geminiviruses are the most devastating plant viruses since they cause significant yield losses in world agriculture. The plant defense initiated against these DNA viruses is of special interest, specifically in regard to the role of epigenetic mechanism played in control of virus spread. These heritable and covalent modifications of DNA and histone in virus genome are mainly related to suppression of gene transcription, despite the differences between viruses, the role of epigenetics seems to be reasonably comparable. However, several key questions remain unanswered concerning the basic mechanism behind the epigenetic regulation of viruses via plant defense system. This book chapter specifically summarizes the recent advances on role of epigenetics in virus genome modification leading to silencing of viral genes and plant tolerance/resistance read more ...
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