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Squash Mosaic Virus in Morocco. B. E. L. Lockhart, Department of Plant Pathology, University of Minnesota/Department de Phytiatrie, Institut Agronomique Hassan II, Complexe Horticole, Agadir, Morocco. Z. Ferji and B. Hafidi, Departement de Phytiatrie, Institut Agronomique Hassan II, Complexe Horticole, B. P. 438, Agadir, Morocco. Plant Dis. 66:1191-1193. Accepted for publication 20 July 1982. Copyright 1982 American Phytopathological Society. DOI: 10.1094/PD-66-1191.

Squash mosaic virus was identified for the first time in Morocco and elsewhere in Africa. The virus was identified on the basis of host range, serological reaction, insect and seed transmissibility, particle morphology, and sedimentation properties. The virus was transmitted experimentally by the coccinellid beetle Epilachna chrysomelina. The Moroccan virus isolate belonged to serotype I SqMV and did not differ appreciably in biological or serological properties from two Arizona isolates of SqMV. All three SqMV isolates caused systemic infection in Chenopodium quinoa, which was previously reported immune to SqMV. The Moroccan virus was isolated from naturally infected Chenopodium album in widely scattered locations in southern Morocco and it also systemically infected Beta vulgaris. Although the virus was isolated from wild C. album, there was no evidence that Epilachna transmitted the virus from this plant to cultivated cucurbits. The virus was identified in 3% of random samples of 150 virus-infected melons, squash, and cucumbers growing in the field or in plastic greenhouses.