Submitted to: APS Net Plant Pathology Online
Publication Type: Other
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/1/2002
Publication Date: 8/12/2002
Citation: Gottwald, T., 2002. Citrus Canker: The Pathogen and Its Impact. APSNET Plant Pathology Online Interpretive Summary: The manuscript represents a detailed overview on citrus canker. It will be accompanied by over 49 color images and will be published on the American Phytopathological Society web site, APSNet, as a feature article. It is aimed at the general Plant Pathology community and anyone else seeking information on citrus canker. The information will be available internationally to all interested persons and institutions. The manuscript covers and demonstrates disease symptoms on various citrus tissues, the causal organism, the disease cycle, interaction with insect pests (especially the Asian leaf miner), host susceptibility/resistance of various citrus species/cultivars/relatives, pathogen diversity and distribution, the infection process, pathogen dispersal and the effects of weather, disease management and control including eradication strategies, an overview of the international history and significance of the disease, and a few social and legal issues regarding the disease, i.e., the science surrounding it and the eradication programs of Florida and Brazil.
Technical Abstract: The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and USDA -APHIS are currently engaged in what may be the largest single regulatory agriculture program to eradicate a plant disease ever undertaken in the history of the United States, if not the world. The target is the bacterial disease of citrus known as Asian citrus canker. The eradication effort is an attempt to mitigate the serious consequences this disease would have on the $8.5 billion Florida commercial citrus industry, the privately grown residential citrus in Florida, and also to protect other citrus-producing areas of the United States which might be harmed by this disease, in particular Texas and perhaps wetter areas of California. Though ten southern and central Florida counties have recently been impacted by the disease, the worst of the CC infestation in Florida is unquestionably in the residential areas in Miami-Dade, Broward and recently Palm Beach Counties on the southeastern Atlantic coast. Difficulties with implementing regulatory action in this area have jeopardized the entire state's citrus industry and are posing historically unprecedented challenges to the plant regulatory agencies. This discussion will describe disease symptoms on various citrus tissues, the causal organism, the disease cycle, interaction with the Asian leaf miner, host susceptibility/resistance, pathogen diversity and distribution, pathogen dispersal and the effects of weather, disease management and control including eradication strategies, an overview of the international history and significance of the disease, and social and legal issues regarding surrounding the disease and its eradication.