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First report of group 16SrIII phytoplasma in loofah (Luffa cylindrica)

, : First report of group 16SrIII phytoplasma in loofah (Luffa cylindrica). Bulletin of Insectology 60(2): 277-278

Loofah (Luffa cylindrica) is grown in several states of Brazil, but is found more frequently as spontaneous plant and in small plantings, as in the State of Rio de Janeiro. In different locations in the State of Rio de Janeiro loofah plants were observed exhibiting symptoms characteristic of diseases caused by phytoplasmas. Symptomatic plants were tested for the presence of phytoplasmas, using phytoplasma-specific DNA amplification in PCR. Sequences of 16S rRNA phytoplasma were amplified in nested PCR primed by P1/P7 and R16F2n/R2. PCR assays primed by R16(III)F2/R1 yielded an amplified product of approximately 0.8 kb. The results demonstrated the presence of a phytoplasma associated with loofah witches' broom for the first time in Brazil, and revealed that the phytoplasma is affiliated to 16SrIII group.


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