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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Poplarville, Mississippi » Southern Horticultural Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #324581

Research Project: Production and Disease and Pest Management of Horticultural Crops

Location: Southern Horticultural Research

Title: Xylella fastidiosa in rabbiteye blueberry in Louisiana is genetically similar to a strain found in Southern highbush blueberry in Georgia

Author
item Ferguson, Mary - Louisiana State University
item Clark, Christopher - Louisiana State University
item Smith, Barbara

Submitted to: Phytopathology
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/4/2016
Publication Date: 3/1/2016
Citation: 8. Ferguson, M.H., Clark, C.A., Smith, B.J., 2016. Xylella fastidiosa in rabbiteye blueberry in Louisiana is genetically similar to a strain found in Southern highbush blueberry in Georgia (Abstr.) Phytopathology 106:S2.8. http://dx.doi.org/10.1094/PHYTO-106-4-S2.8. 2016.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: During the past ten years, Xylella fastidiosa has been confirmed as a pathogen of Southern highbush blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum interspecific hybrids) in Georgia and Florida. Recent work in Louisiana has shown that it is also associated with reduced yield and altered fruit quality in ‘Tifblue’ rabbiteye blueberry (Vaccinium ashei = V. virgatum). Seven loci of the X. fastidiosa genome (cysG, gltT, holC, leuA, malF, nuoL, and petC) were sequenced from X. fastidiosa-infected rabbiteye blueberry leaf (petiole and midrib) tissue, in order to characterize the infecting bacteria using multilocus sequence typing (MLST). A comparison of sequences from rabbiteye blueberry tissue to allele sequences from an MLST database of X. fastidiosa isolates, along with published information about sequence types identified in various plant hosts, suggests that the strain associated with yield loss in a rabbiteye blueberry orchard in Louisiana is similar to isolates from blueberry in Georgia as well as isolates from both giant ragweed (Ambrosia trifida) and western soapberry (Sapindus saponaria) in Texas. This preliminary finding suggests that rabbiteye and Southern highbush blueberries and certain wild plants could act as alternative hosts of the same strain of X. fastidiosa. Additional work is being done to determine the sequence types of X. fastidiosa found in wild plants surrounding a blueberry orchard, as well as in other rabbiteye blueberry plants.