Plant viruses rely on both host plant and vectors for a successful infection. Essentially to simplify studies, transmission has been considered for decades as an interaction between two partners, virus and vector. This interaction has gained a third partner, the host plant, to establish a tripartite pathosystem in which the players can react with each other directly or indirectly through changes induced in/by the third partner. For instance, viruses can alter the plant metabolism or plant immune defence pathways to modify vector’s attraction, settling or feeding, in a way that can be conducive for virus propagation. Such changes in the plant physiology can also become favourable to the vector, establishing a mutualistic relationship. This review focuses on the recent molecular data on the interplay between viral and plant factors that provide some important clues to understand how viruses manipulate both the host plants and vectors in order to improve transmission conditions and thus ensuring their survival.
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