Historically, the study of plant viruses has contributed greatly to the elucidation of eukaryotic biology. Recently, concurrent with the development of viruses into expression vectors, the biotechnology industry has developed an increasing number of disease therapies utilizing recombinant proteins. Plant virus vectors are viewed as a viable option for recombinant protein production. Employing pathogens in the process of creating added value to agriculture is, in effect, making an ally from an enemy. This review discusses the development and use of viruses as expression vectors, with special emphasis on (+) strand RNA virus systems. Further, the use of virus expression vectors in large-scale agricultural settings to produce recombinant proteins is described, and the technical challenges that need to be addressed by agriculturists and molecular virologists to fully realize the potential of this latest evolution of plant science are outlined.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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