The draft whole-genome sequence of “
Liberibacter solanacearum” strain R1, isolated from and maintained in tomato plants in California, is reported. The R1 strain has the genome size of 1,204,257 bp, G+C content of 35.3%, 1,101 predicted open reading frames, and 57 RNA genes.
We report here the draft genome sequence of “
Liberibacter asiaticus” strain HHCA, collected from a lemon tree in California. The HHCA strain has a genome size of 1,150,620 bp, 36.5% G+C content, 1,119 predicted open reading frames, and 51 RNA genes.
The draft genome sequence of “
Liberibacter asiaticus” strain A4, isolated from a mandarin citrus in Guangdong, People's Republic of China, is reported. The A4 strain has a genome size of 1,208,625 bp, G+C content of 36.4%, 1,107 predicted open reading frames, and 53 RNA genes.
Huanglongbing (HLB) is a highly detrimental citrus disease associated with ‘Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus’, a nonculturable alpha-proteobacterium. Characterization of the bacterial populations is important for development of disease management strategies. In this study, the ‘Ca. L. asiaticus’ populations in eight provinces in southern China where HLB is endemic were analyzed based on tandem repeat number (TRN) variations in a previously characterized genomic locus CLIBASIA_01645. Of the 224 HLB samples collected, 175 (78.3%) samples yielded single polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplicons (the single amplicon group, SAG) and 49 (21.7%) samples produced multiple PCR amplicons (the multiple amplicon group, MAG). Variations in SAG are summarized by Nei's diversity index (H) and ratio of TRN ≤ 10/TRN > 10 genotypes (R10). Variations in the MAG are described by the percentage of occurrence (PMAG). At an orchard-level comparison, the ‘Ca. L. asiaticus’ population from a Guangdong orchard (n = 24) showed H = 0.50, R10 = 23, and PMAG = 0, significantly different from that of the non-Guangdong orchards in Yunnan (n = 23), H = 0.83, R10 = 2.3, and PMAG = 11.5, and in Hainan (n = 35), H = 0.88, R10 = 1.5, and PMAG = 16.7. In a region-level consideration, the Guangdong ‘Ca. L. asiaticus’ population (n = 78) was H = 0.77, R10 = 25, and PMAG = 1.3, whereas the non-Guangdong population (n = 84) was H = 0.91, R10 = 1.6, and PMAG = 26.9. Overall, significant differences were observed between the ‘Ca. L. asiaticus’ population from Guangdong Province and those from the other provinces. A strong aggregation of TRN = 6, 7, and 8 genotypes is characteristic to the ‘Ca. L. asiaticus’ population in Guangdong. Referenced to genome annotation, we propose that rearrangement of tandem repeats at locus CLIBASIA_01645 could be associated with bacterial environmental adaptation.
Citrus huanglongbing (HLB) or yellow shoot disease (i.e., greening disease) is highly destructive to citrus production worldwide. Understanding the etiology of HLB is critical for managing the disease. HLB is currently associated with infection by ‘Candidatus Liberibacter spp.’ around the world, including China. However, Koch's postulates have not been fulfilled. In addition, other plant pathogens also may be involved in HLB. In a survey performed in Guangdong Province, P. R. China in 2006 and 2007, 141 citrus samples showing typical symptoms of HLB from 11 different cities were collected. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) using phytoplasma-specific primer sets fU5/rU3 nested with primer set P1/P7 identified 110 (78.0%) positive samples. A 1,785-bp amplicon was obtained with primer set P1/P7. Analysis showed a 100% identity of this sequence in the region of 16S rDNA and 16S-23S rRNA intergenic transcribed spacer to three strains of ‘Candidatus Phytoplasma asteris’ (onion yellows [Japan], aster yellows ‘watercress’ [Hawaii], and valeriana yellows [Lithuania]). Of the 141 samples, 89 (63.1%) samples were positive for ‘Ca. Liberibacter asiaticus’. When mixed infection was considered, 69 (48.9%) samples were positive for both ‘Ca. P. asteris’ and ‘Ca. L. asiaticus’. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) showed low titers of both walled and wall-less bodies in the phloem sieve tubes of HLB citrus. When transmission from symptomatic citrus to periwinkle (Catharanthus roseus) via dodder (Cuscuta campestris) was conducted, both phytoplasma and ‘Ca. L. asiaticus’ were detected from the affected periwinkle. In addition to yellowing/mottling, the infected periwinkle showed symptoms of virescence and phyllody which are commonly associated with phytoplasmal diseases. TEM analysis of affected periwinkle revealed pleomorphic and wall-less organisms, characteristic of phytoplasmas, filling some phloem sieve tubes. In contrast, walled bacteria were at low titer. This study showed that in addition to ‘Ca. L. asiaticus’, a phytoplasma related to ‘Ca. P. asteris’ could also be detected in citrus showing HLB symptoms in Guangdong.
Atalantia buxifolia (Poir.) Oliv., synonym Severinia buxifolia (Poir.) Ten. as commonly found in literature, is a common landscape plant and a popular Chinese medicinal herb known as Jiubingle or Dongfengjie. It remains unclear if this rutaceous plant could host ‘Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus’, the pathogen of citrus Huanglongbing (HLB) in Guangdong, P. R. China. This information is important for HLB control in citrus because infected A. buxifolia could serve as a source of inoculum. In August of 1994, three A. buxifolia plants adjacent to a citrus experimental orchard of the South China Agricultural University at Guangzhou were found showing leaf mottle/yellowing symptoms. Two buds from each plant were grafted onto three mandarin trees (Citrus reticulata cv. Pongan) in a psyllid-proof screenhouse for indexing. By October of 1995, typical leaf mottle symptoms were observed in all three grafted trees compared with a healthy control. In March of 1996, one of the A. buxifolia plants was transferred to a screenhouse and has been maintained there. The leaf mottle/yellowing symptoms persisted but did not significantly affect plant growth. DNA was extracted from leaf samples in October 2006 by using the CTAB (cetyltrimethylammoniumbromide) method and assayed by nested-PCR using the general bacterial 16S rDNA primer set fDl/rD1 as the first round of amplification and primer set OI1/OI2c as second round amplification (1,3). After agarose gel electrophoresis and staining with ethidium bromide, an approximate 1.1-kb DNA band was detected in symptomatic samples but not healthy leaf samples of A. buxifolia and C. reticulata. XbaI digestion of the amplicons yielded approximate 500- and 600-bp fragments, characteristic of ‘Ca. L. asiaticus’. Similarly, a standard PCR with primer set A5/J2 (3) yielded an approximate 700-bp DNA band characteristic of ‘Ca. L. asiaticus’ from symptomatic samples only. To our knowledge, this is the first report of graft transmission and PCR detection of ‘Ca. L. asiaticus’ from A. buxifolia in Guangdong, P. R. China. This work also confirms the findings from Taiwan (2) that A. buxifolia could serve as a source of ‘Ca. L. asiaticus’. References: (1) X. Deng et al. Online publication. doi:10.1094/PHP-2007-0419-01-BR. Plant Health Progress, 2007. (2) T.-H. Hung et al. Eur. J. Plant Pathol. 107:183, 2001. (3) S. Jagoueix et al. Mol. Cell. Probes 10:43, 1996.
Murraya paniculata (orange jasmine) is a popular ornamental rutaceaous plant and is known to be a preferred host for the Asian citrus psyllid, Diaphorina citri (Kuwayana), the primary vector of ‘Candidatus Liberibacter spp.’ that causes citrus Huanglongbing (HLB). HLB is a highly destructive citrus disease worldwide. However, the presence of ‘Ca. Liberibacter spp.’ in M. paniculata remains uncertain (2). Clarification of M. paniculata as a host of ‘Ca. Liberibacter spp.’ has direct impact on HLB control programs. During June of 2006, we identified three M. paniculata trees near a mandarin orchard affected by HLB in Luoding City and two trees from Guangzhou City, Guangdong Province, People's Republic of China. All trees had leaves showing yellowing and mottling symptoms characteristic of HLB. Both symptomatic and asymptomatic leaves were collected. DNA was extracted using the CTAB (cetyltrimethylammoniumbromide) method and assayed by nested-PCR. The general bacterial 16S rDNA primer set fDl/rD1 (3) was used for the first round of amplification. Amplification was conducted as previously described (1), and 2 μl of PCR reaction product were used for a second round of amplification using the same procedure but with 35 PCR cycles with primer set OI1/OI2c (3,4). After agarose gel electrophoresis and staining with ethidium bromide, a 1.1-kb DNA band was unambiguously associated with symptomatic but not asymptomatic leaf samples. Nonnested-PCR using primer set OI1/OI2c alone did not yield a target DNA band or yielded a very weak DNA band. XbaI digestion of the nested-PCR DNA product yielded two fragments, 520 and 640 bp long, characteristic of ‘Ca. L. asiaticus’. PCR amplicons were sequenced and were 1,095 bp long. This sequence shared >98% similarity to sequences of ‘Ca. L. asiaticus’ in the GenBank database. We observed that nested-PCR is necessary for consistent amplification of DNA from ‘Ca. L. asiaticus’ from M. paniculata. We excluded the possible nonspecific amplification associated with nested-PCR by XbaI restriction enzyme digestion and by nucleotide sequence analysis. Our data indicate that M. paniculata is a host of ‘Ca. L. asiaticus’ but the bacterial titer might be low. References: (1) X. Deng et al. Online publication. doi:10.1094/PHP-2007-0419-01-BR. Plant Health Progress, 2007. (2) M. Garnier and J. Bove. Huanglongbing (Greening). Page 46 in: Compendium of Citrus Diseases. 2nd ed. L. W. Timmer et al., eds. The American Phytopathological Society, St. Paul, MN, 2000. (3) S. Jagoueix et al. Int. J. Syst. Bacteriol. 44:379, 1994. (4) S. Jagoueix et al. Mol. Cell. Probes 10:43, 1996.