Prevalence and incidence of yellow dwarf viruses across a climatic gradient: a four-year field study in south eastern Australia Academic Article uri icon


  • Yellow dwarf viruses (YDVs) form a complex of economically important pathogens that affect cereal production worldwide, reducing yield and quality. The prevalence and incidence of YDVs including barley yellow dwarf viruses (BYDV-PAV and BYDV-MAV) and cereal yellow dwarf virus (CYDV-RPV) in cereal fields in Victoria, Australia were measured. As temperature decreases and rainfall increases from north to south in Victoria, fields in three geographical regions were evaluated to determine potential differences in virus prevalence and incidence across the weather gradient. Cereal samples randomly collected from each field during spring for four consecutive years (2014–2017) were tested for BYDV-PAV, BYDV-MAV, and CYDV-RPV using tissue blot immunoassay. BYDV-PAV was the most prevalent YDV species overall and had the highest overall mean incidence. Higher temperature and lower rainfall were associated with reduced prevalence and incidence of YDVs as the northern region, which is hotter and drier, had a 17-fold decrease in virus incidence compared with the cooler and wetter regions. Considerable year-to-year variation in virus prevalence and incidence was observed. This study improves our understanding of virus epidemiology, which will aid the development of more targeted control measures and predictive models. It also highlights the need to monitor for YDVs and their vectors over multiple years to assess the level of risk and to make more informed and appropriate disease management decisions.


  • Nancarrow, Narelle
  • Aftab, Mohammad
  • Freeman, Angela
  • Rodoni, Brendan
  • Hollaway, Grant
  • Trębicki, Piotr

publication date

  • 2018