H. Min and
S. B. Hu, College of Life Sciences and Shaanxi Key Laboratory of Molecular Biology for Agriculture, Key Laboratory of Plant Protection Resources and Pest Management, Ministry of Education, Northwestern A&F University, Yangling, Shaanxi, 712100, P. R. China; and
Z. N. Li,
Y. F. Wu,
C. P. Zhang, and
T. Wei, College of Plant Protection, Key Laboratory of Plant Protection Resources and Pest Management, Ministry of Education, Northwestern A&F University, Yangling, Shaanxi, 712100, P. R. China
In August of 2008, a disease of chrysanthemum (Dendranthema morifolium (Ramat.) Tzvel) caused losses of 70 to 80% in one of the largest chrysanthemum gardens in Yangling, Shanxi Province, China. Chrysanthemum plants in nearby areas also were affected to various degrees. Symptoms included flattened stems, shortening of internodes, yellowing of leaf margins, root death, and dwarfing of plants. Affected plants eventually collapsed. On the basis of these symptoms, a phytoplasma was suspected. Total nucleic acids were extracted from 0.5 g of phloem tissue from stems of eight symptomatic and eight asymptomatic plants by the cetyltrimethylammoniumbromide (CTAB) method (1). To amplify phytoplasma DNA, primer pairs R16mF2/R16mR1, followed by R16F2n/R16R1 (2), were used in a nested PCR. A final amplicon product (1.2 kb) was obtained from all symptomatic plants but not from asymptomatic ones. Restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) analyses of R16F2n/R16R1 amplicons with MseI, AluI, HhaI, HaeIII, KpnI, RsaI, and HpaII endonucleases indicated that all symptomatic plants, but none of the asymptomatic plants, contained a phytoplasma strain of group 16SrI, subgroup B (3). A search of rDNA sequences in GenBank revealed a similarity (>99%) to aster yellow phytoplasma, 16SrI group, thereby confirming strain identity based on RFLP analysis. These results indicate the disease of chrysanthemum is associated with a phytoplasma related to the aster yellow phytoplasma group. Sequences were deposited in GenBank (Accession No. FJ543467). A vector of this phytoplasma in chrysanthemum has not been identified.
References: (1) E. Angelini et al. Vitis 40:79, 2001. (2) D. E. Gundersen and I.-M. Lee. Phytopathol. Mediterr. 35:144, 1996. (3) I. M. Lee et al. Int. J. Syst. Evol. Microbiol. 48:1153, 1998.