Apple sessile leaf: a new phytoplasma disease of apple found in Lithuania
A new disease of apple (Malus domestica) has been found in the Kaisiadorys region of Lithuania. Affected trees showed leaf yellowing, shoot proliferation and a previously undescribed symptom of ‘sessile leaf’, where ‘golden’ leaves are directly attached to the trunk. These symptoms differ from those of apple proliferation (associated with ‘Candidatus Phytoplasma mali’ - EPPO A2 list) which are characterized by enlarged stipules, witches’ broom and bronze-reddish discoloration of leaves. PCR using universal primers confirmed the presence of a phytoplasma. RFLP and nucleotide sequence analysis revealed the presence of a phytoplasma belonging to 16SrI-B subgroup (phytoplasmas associated with aster yellows and related diseases, for which the name ‘Candidatus Phytoplasma asteris’ has been proposed). This is the first report of ‘Candidatus Phytoplasma asteris’ infecting apple in Lithuania.
Jomantiene R, Davis RE (2004) Apple sessile leaf: a new disease associated with a ‘Candidatus Phytoplasma asteris’ subgroup 16SrI-B phytoplasma in Lithuania. British Society for Plant Pathology. New Disease Reports, vol 10.