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Elimination of Potato Spindle Tuber Viroid by Low Temperature and Meristem Culture. R. E. Lizárraga, Graduate student, Centro Internacional de la Papa (CIP), Apartado 5969, Lima, Peru; L. F. Salazar(2), W. M. Roca(3), and L. Schilde-Rentschler(4). (2)(3)(4)Virologist, and plant physiologists, respectively. Centro Internacional de la Papa (CIP), Apartado 5969, Lima, Peru, (3)Present address: Centro Internacional de Agricultura Tropical (CIAT), Apartado Aereo 67-13, Cali, Colombia. Phytopathology 70:754-755. Accepted for publication 2 January 1980. Copyright 1980 The American Phytopathological Society. DOI: 10.1094/Phyto-70-754.

Since growing of potato plants at low temperature seems to adversely affect the replication of the potato spindle tuber viroid (PSTV), a study was undertaken to investigate the possibility of eradicating it from an infected clone. A severe strain of PSTV was successfully eliminated from a potato clone by a combination of low temperature treatment (5–8 C) of the infected plant and subsequent meristem culture. Seven of 13 plants, which developed from meristems of plantlets grown in vitro at 5–6 C for 6 mo, were found to be free of PSTV. From plantlets derived from infected tubers and grown at 8 C for 4 mo, 17 excised meristems grew to plants and five of them were free of PSTV. All plants grown from meristems of in vitro plants or of plants from infected tubers that had been cultivated at 22–25 C, were still infected. PSTV was detected by electrophoresis and tomato bioassay on plants raised under temperature conditions favorable for PSTV multiplication.