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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Emerging and Reemerging Virus Diseases of Blueberry and Cranberry

item Martin, Robert - Bob
item Tzanetakis, I
item Caruso, F
item Polashock, James

Submitted to: Acta Horticulturae
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/16/2008
Publication Date: 3/2/2009
Citation: Martin, R.R., Tzanetakis, I.E., Caruso, F.L., Polashock, J.J. 2009. Emerging and reemerging virus diseases of blueberry and cranberry. Acta Horticulturae. 810:299-304.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: It should be expected that as blueberry cultivation continues to expand into new areas the plants will become exposed to viruses that have not been observed in blueberry previously. Since the last symposium in 2004, Blueberry scorch virus continues to be a major concern in the Pacific Northwest of the United States and it has also been detected in New England as well as the Netherlands and Italy in Europe. In the past, blueberry mosaic symptoms appeared to spread very slowly or not at all, while in recent years, the disease has been spreading within fields and appearing in new fields. Blueberry mosaic symptoms have been observed in many production areas. A high molecular weight double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) has been detected in plants with mosaic symptoms, indicating the presence of a virus, but the virus has yet to be characterized. Blueberry red ringspot virus has been detected in the southeastern United States. A virus has been detected in plants exhibiting Blueberry fruit drop symptoms in the Pacific Northwest. In cranberry, funky flower symptoms have been observed in the northeastern United States for the past 10 years. Recently, Cucumber mosaic virus has been detected in plants exhibiting funky flower symptoms. Efforts to demonstrate a causal relationship between Cucumber mosaic virus and disease symptoms are underway. Tobacco streak virus was first reported from cranberry plants imported into Scotland and has since been detected in New Jersey. A breakthrough in detection of viruses in Vaccinium species has come from the development of a dsRNA extraction method that worked reliably with blueberry and cranberry. Cloning and sequencing of purified dsRNA has been the most successful means for the characterization of viruses of woody plants that can not be transmitted to herbaceous hosts.

Last Modified: 07/25/2017
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