Submitted to: American Phytopathological Society Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: November 17, 1997
Publication Date: N/A
The rare plant Fragaria multicipita, first reported in 1908 and thought to be extinct until its rediscovery in 1992, was characterized by a dwarfed, multi-crowned growth habit. Graft transmission of the growth form from F. multicipita to E. chiloensis led to the suggestion (by others) that F. multicipita was a diseased form of F. virginiana, and to the reduction of F. multicipita to the taxonomic rank of forma. Using polymerase chain reactions, we amplified phytoplasma-specific 16S rDNA sequences from E. multicipita and grafted F. chiloensis. RFLP analysis of the amplified DNAs indicated that these plants were infected by a phytoplasma belonging to 16S rRNA gene group 16SrVI (clover proliferation, potato witches' broom, and related phytoplasmas), and that the phytoplasma represented a distinct new subgroup, which we designate 16SrVI-B. Based on these findings, we suggest that "F. multicipita" is an aberrant growth form induced by phytoplasmal infection.