Submitted to: Plant Disease
Publication Type: Peer reviewed journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/19/1997
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: Interpretive Summary: Mealybug wilt of pineapple (MWP) is a serious disorder that nearly destroyed the pineapple industry in Hawaii in the early 1900s. Although this disease has been reported throughout the world and has posed a significant threat to the industry for more than 80 years, its etiology is still unknown. The study of pineapple closterovirus' (PCV) role in the MWP disease complex has been difficult because of the lack of a reliable, rapid detection assay for this virus. The aim of this study was to use the specific monoclonal antibodies against PCV to develop a direct tissue blotting immunoassay to detect PCV and to apply this assay to study the association of PCV with MWP. PCV was found distributed in the green, interface and white tissues of the leaves. Overall, samples with MWP symptoms tested 49-99% positive for PCV, whereas 31-35% of the samples from asymptomatic plants tested positive. These results demonstrate that direct tissue blotting innumoassay (DTBIA) is a rapid and reliable assay for detection of PCV in pineapple tissues, allowing a single individual to test 2000+ samples within one week. This assay is less labor intensive than ELISA, is more sensitive and can detect PCV from leaf samples with little preparation. The results also reveal a definite association of PCV with MWP indicating that PCV plays an important role in the etiology of MWP.
Technical Abstract: Specific monoclonal antibodies to pineapple closterovirus (PCV) were used in a direct tissue blotting immunoassay (DTBIA) to detect PCV in pineapple. More than 2000 samples can be tested within a week by a single individual using this rapid and reliable assay. Studies of the association of PCV with mealybug wilt of pineapple (MWP) suggest that PCV plays an important role in MWP. PCV was also detected from symptomless pineapple plants in the field and in the USDA pineapple germplasm collection. A working hypothesis of the etiology of MWP is proposed.