Submitted to: Acta Horticulturae
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/16/2004
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: Sharka is among the most severe diseases damaging stone-fruit trees including apricot, cherry, peach and plum. The causative agent is plum pox potyvirus (PPV) that is naturally transmitted by aphids. No effective measures have been found to restrict PPV outbreaks and it has spread across European borders to the Middle East, North Africa, and North and South America. The difficulty of controlling PPV led us to develop resistance through genetic engineering technology. The PPV capsid gene has been engineered into the plum genome, and a resistant clone has been identified. Posttranscriptional gene silencing (PTGS) is the mechanism involved in resistance. These resistant plants have been field tested under the appropriate permits and their ability to resist PPV infection in the long-term is being verified.