Background: Alfalfa, Medicago sativa L. is the most important and widely grown leguminous fodder crop in temperate and tropical regions of the world. The production of alfalfa crop is limited by several biotic stresses, among which witches’ broom disease (AWB) was reported to cause significant economic losses.
Methods: The phytoplasma infected alfalfa plants were collected from a central research farm, ICAR-IGFRI, Jhansi, U.P. Qualitative parameters such as crude protein content, acid detergent fibre and neutral detergent fibre were estimated in diseased and healthy plants. Phytoplasma universal primer (P1/P7) and nested primer (R16mF2/R16mR1) were used for the molecular characterization of AWB infected plants and phytoplasma infected, Parthenium hysterophorus. Result: The incidence of AWB disease ranged from 8-10%. The quantitative analysis of disease plants showed reduced plant height (-35%), fresh weight (-46.89%) and dry weight (-50.08%) compared to healthy plants. The diseased plant recorded low crude protein content (-21.38%) and higher dry matter content (+0.68%), acid detergent fibre (+33.72%) and neutral detergent fibre (+13.06%). The association of phytoplasma in diseased alfalfa and parthenium samples was confirmed by using P1/P7 and R16mF2/R16mR1 primer pair and Blastn analysis shared 99.6-100% similarity with ‘Candidatus Phytoplasma australasia’ belongs to the 16Sr group II-D.
The natural occurrence of 'Candidatus Phytoplasma trifolii' in pear trees (Pyrus communis Linnaeus) is reported here for the first time. In 2017, a total of thirty-five pear trees, two of them exhibiting leaf rolling along the midvein, reddening, bushy appearance, and upright growth symptoms were sampled in different locations in Van province, Turkey. The total deoxyribonucleic acid was extracted from symptomatic and asymptomatic plants. The purified DNA served as a template in nested polymerase chain reaction (nested-PCR) assays, performed to amplify 16S rRNA sequences using universal primer pairs (R16mF2/R16mR1 and R16F2n/R16R2). The resulting PCR products were then cloned into a pGEM T-Easy vector and sequenced bidirectionally. The phytoplasma strain, group, and subgroup identity were determined using the in silico restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) analysis of the 16S ribosomal RNA-encoding gene sequences profiling with seventeen distinct restriction enzymes. Of the thirty-five pear samples, only two yielded 1 256 bp and 1 258 bp DNA fragments and were designated as Van-Pr3 (Acc. No. MH709141) and Van-Pr4 (Acc. No. MH730561), respectively. Based on the in silico virtual RFLP pattern analysis of the 16S rRNA sequences, we confirmed the presence of 'Ca. P. trifolii' belonging to the clover proliferation group and both identified phytoplasmas were identical with the similarity coefficient of 1.00 to the reference pattern of 16Sr group VI, subgroup A (Acc. No. AY390261). Here we report that the pear tree is an alternate host of the 'Ca. P. trifolii'.
HighlightsA portable system based on real-time fluorescence analysis was developed for field detection of Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus within 40 min from sample to answer.A smartphone-assisted device was designed for easy operation, reliable nucleic acid amplification, and highly sensitive fluorescence detection, with sensitivity comparable to that of a commercial instrument.A novel homemade 3D printed box was used for in-field reagent storage, and it could maintain low temperature (&lt;4°C) for about 8 hours without power supply.This fully integrated system is stable, easy to use, inexpensive, and has great application prospects in resource-limited areas.Abstract. Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus (Las) is a main causal agent of huanglongbing (HLB), a destructive disease that has greatly reduced citrus yields and quality. Instruments with high sensitivity and portability are urgently required for on-site testing. In this study, a novel sample-to-answer optical system for on-site detection of Las was developed. Three major functions, including DNA extraction, amplification, and detection, are integrated into a portable case. This system mainly consists of (1) a specially designed 3D printed box for on-site reagent storage that can maintain low temperature (below 4°C) for 7.5 h at ambient temperature (35°C); (2) a custom device, called the IF-Device, for DNA amplification and detection of HLB, with an optimized optical structure, a sensitive signal processing circuit, and a precise temperature control algorithm with an accuracy of ±0.1°C; and (3) a battery-based power supply for the whole system. In a typical test using sodium fluorescein as a standard model, the results showed that the sensitivity of this system (1.0 nM) could easily meet the requirements of fluorescence biosensors. The feasibility of this homemade system was evaluated with samples extracted from infected citrus leaves based on the loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) method, and the limit of detection (LOD) was approximately 1.0 × 10-4 ng µL-1. The whole detection process for eight samples could be simultaneously accomplished within 40 min, and the results could be displayed on a smartphone in real-time. Moreover, the portable case is anti-interference, low cost, and only 2 kg in weight. Considering its sensitivity, stability, and portability, this highly integrated system possesses promising prospects for in-field detection. Keywords: Field detection, Fluorescence biosensor, Huanglongbing, Isothermal amplification, Sample-to-answer.