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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Corvallis, Oregon » Horticultural Crops Research Unit » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #250146

Title: Tomato ringspot virus and Tobacco ringspot virus in Highbush Blueberry in New York State

item FUCHS, M - Cornell University - New York
item ABAWI, G - Cornell University - New York
item MARSELLA-HERRRICK, P - Cornell University - New York
item COX, R - Cornell University - New York
item COX, K - Cornell University - New York
item CARROL, J - Cornell University - New York
item Martin, Robert

Submitted to: Journal of Plant Pathology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/25/2010
Publication Date: 8/27/2010
Citation: Fuchs, M., Abawi, G.S., Marsella-Herrrick, P., Cox, R., Cox, K.D., Carrol, J.E., Martin, R.R. 2010. Tomato ringspot virus and tobacco ringspot virus in highbush blueberry in New York State. Journal of Plant Pathology. 92:451-459.

Interpretive Summary: Tomato ringspot virus and Tobacco ringspot virus were detected in blueberry cultivars Patriot and Bluecrop in New York. Plants exhibiting decline symptoms were tested for all known viruses of blueberry including: Blueberry shock; Blueberry scorch; Blueberry leaf mottle; Blueberry shoestring; Blueberry red ringspot; and Peach rosette mosaic in addition to Tomato ringspot and Tobacco ringspot viruses; only these two viruses were detected. Even though both viruses were present in the same fields, no plants were identified that were infected with the two viruses. The vector for these two viruses (Xiphinema americanum) was present and in baiting assays did transmit the viruses to cucumber plants in greenhouse studies. Again, none of the bait plants were doubly infected. The virus titer in the blueberry bushes was generally very low and difficult to detect by ELISA or PCR, suggesting that these viruses may often be missed in routine laboratory testing. In other studies, the cultivar Bluecrop has been reported to be immune to Tomato ringspot virus infection. This suggests that the strains of Tomato ringspot virus in these fields may be unique in their pathogenicity. The Tomato ringspot virus was detected by immuno-capture reverse transcription PCR, but not by conventional RT-PCR, again emphasizing the low titer of this virus in blueberry bushes.

Technical Abstract: A survey of highbush blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum L.) cultivars Patriot and Bluecrop showing virus-like symptoms and decline in vigor in New York was conducted to assess the occurrence of viruses. Leaf samples from symptomatic and asymptomatic bushes reacted positively to Tobacco ringspot virus (TRSV) and Tomato ringspot virus (ToRSV) in enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (7%, 37 of 528). The presence of these two viruses was confirmed in blueberry leaf samples by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and immunocapture-RT-PCR with appropriate primer pairs to amplify a 320-bp and a 585-bp fragment of the RNA-dependent RNA polymerase gene of TRSV and ToRSV, respectively. Comparative sequence analysis of viral amplicons of New York isolates indicated moderate (80.7-99.7%) and high (90.8-99.7%) nucleotide sequence identities with other ToRSV and TRSV strains, respectively. Analysis of soil samples collected from the root zone of blueberry bushes revealed the presence of Xiphinema americanum-group nematodes. Cucumber bait plants potted in soil samples containing X. americanum became infected with ToRSV or TRSV in a greenhouse. Together, these findings indicated that ToRSV and TRSV are associated with the decline of highbush blueberry in New York, and vector competent X. americanum sensu lato are present in the fields.