The evolution of Citrus tristeza virus (CTV) from outbreaks occurred in Calabria, Italy, was compared with that of CTV outbreaks reported previously in other two proximal Italian regions, Sicily and Apulia. Examination of four genomic regions (genes p20, p25 and p23, and one fragment of ORF1) showed two recombination events, and phylogenetic analysis disclosed two divergent CTV groups in Calabria: one formed by severe and the other by mild isolates. This analysis, together with others involving population genetic parameters, revealed a low migration rate of CTV between these Italian regions, as well as significant differences in selective pressures, epidemiology and demography, all affecting the genetic structure of these CTV populations.
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