Oligonucleotide microarray with a minimal number of probes for the detection and identification of thirteen genera of plant viruses
A major challenge facing agriculture at present is the development of techniques that can screen field samples and other plant materials simultaneously for the presence of many viruses. Microarray techniques show promise in this regard, as their high throughput nature can potentially detect a range of viruses using a single test. In this paper we present an array that can detect a wide spectrum of 169 plant virus species from 13 different genera. The array was constructed using an automated probe design protocol which generated a minimal number of probes to detect viruses at the genus level. The designed arrays showed a high specificity and sensitivity when tested with a set of standard virus samples. Field samples collected from a severe disease outbreak of Panax notoginseng farms in Yunnan, China, in 2001 were screened, where a potyvirus infection was identified associated with the disease.
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