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Mechanical transmission of citrus viroids

Barbosa, C.J., Pina, J.A., Perez-Panades, J., Bernad, L., Serra, P., Navarro, L., Duran-Vila, N.
Plant disease 2005 v.89 no.7 pp. 749-754
Citrus jambhiri, lemons, Citrus clementina, clementines, Citrus limon, host plants, Citrus exocortis viroid, Citrus viroid IV, Citrus bent leaf viroid, Hop stunt viroid, Citrus viroid III, disease transmission, mechanical damage, plant damage, fruit trees, fruit crops
Preliminary transmission assays conducted under greenhouse conditions demonstrated that Citrus exocortis viroid (CEVd), Citrus bent leaf viroid (CBLVd), Hop stunt viroid (HSVd), Citrus viroid III (CVd-III), and Citrus viroid IV (CVd-IV) can be mechanically transmitted from citron to citron (Citrus medica) by a single slash with a knife blade. The impact of mechanical transmission of viroids by pruning and harvesting operations was also demonstrated in experimental and commercial field plots. Transmission efficiency under field conditions ranged from 4% in 'Nules' clementine to 10% in 'Navelina' sweet orange and 21% in 'Verna' lemon. Transmission efficiency varied only slightly with viroid and donor hosts. The impact of viroid transmission on tree height, canopy volume, and crop harvest was minimal. When the donor host was coinfected with several viroids, the viroids were not necessarily cotransmitted. Considerations regarding viroid transmission in other climates are discussed. Measures to control viroid spread in nurseries should be mandatory in certification programs.