Submitted to: Centre for Agriculture and Biosciences International
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/17/2012
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: Zebra chip, a new and economically important disease of potato, is caused by the bacterium Liberibacter transmitted to potato by the potato psyllid vector. The bacterium also causes serious damage to other important crops, including tomato, pepper, eggplant, tobacco, and carrot. Researchers at USDA-ARS Wapato, WA provided information on how to identify the bacterium and discussed its geographic distribution, biology, spread, economic importance and management. This information will assist in preventing spread of Liberibacter to minimize its damage.
Technical Abstract: Zebra chip (ZC) is a new and economically important disease of potato in the United States, Mexico, Central America, and New Zealand. This disease has caused millions of dollars in losses to the potato industry. Whole crops might be rejected because of high levels of ZC. Chips or fries processed from ZC-infected tubers exhibit dark stripes that become markedly more visible with frying, and hence are commercially unacceptable. ZC-infected tubers usually do not sprout and if they do, produce hair sprouts or weak plants. ZC is associated with a previously undescribed species of liberibacter, tentatively named “Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum”, also known as “Ca. L. psyllaurous”. The bacterium is transmitted to potato by the psyllid Bactericera cockerelli. This plant pathogen also severely damages other important crops, including tomato, pepper, eggplant, tobacco, and carrot. Identification, geographic distribution, biology, spread, epidemiology, economic importance and management of this bacterium are discussed herein.