Banana bunchy top virus (BBTV; family Nanoviridae, genus Babuvirus) is a multi-component, ssDNA virus, which causes widespread banana crop losses throughout tropical Africa and Australasia. We determined the full genome sequences of 12 BBTV isolates from the Kingdom of Tonga and analysed these together with previously determined BBTV sequences to show that reassortment and both inter- and intra-component recombination have all been relatively requent occurrences during BBTV evolution. We found that whereas DNA-U3 components display evidence of complex inter- and intra-component recombination, all of the South Pacific DNA-R components have a common intra-component recombinant origin spanning the replicationassociated protein gene. Altogether, the DNA-U3 and DNA-M components display a greater degree of inter-component recombination than the DNA-R, -S, -C and -M components. The breakpoint distribution of the inter-component recombination events reveals a primary recombination hotspot around the 59 side of the common region major and, in accordance with recombination hotspots detectable in related ssDNA viruses, a secondary recombination hotspot near the origin of virion-strand replication.
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