A LAMP Protocol for the Detection of ‘Candidatus Phytoplasma pyri’, the Causal Agent of Pear Decline

Siemonsmeier et al. (2019). Plant Disease 103 (6)
Names (1)
Ca. Phytoplasma pyri
Agronomy and Crop Science Plant Science
Phytoplasmas are cell-wall-less bacteria that cause diseases in approximately 1,000 plant species. ‘Candidatus Phytoplasma pyri’, the causal agent of pear decline, induces various symptoms on its hosts, leading to weakening and dieback of the plants, reduced fruit size and yield, and, consequently, considerable financial losses in all pear-growing areas. Fighting this disease requires a reliable and inexpensive method for pathogen detection in propagation material as well as plant stocks in orchards and breeding facilities. Here, we present a field-suitable detection protocol for ‘Ca. P. pyri’ based on loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) targeting the phytoplasmal 16S ribosomal DNA sequence. The combination of a simplified sample preparation method based on sodium hydroxide and colorimetric visualization of LAMP results enables a laboratory-independent pathogen detection. The detection limit is comparable with analysis by polymerase chain reaction; however, the pear decline LAMP detection method is superior in terms of ease of use, cost, and time effectiveness for obtaining results.
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