During a survey in 2005 of weeds from the Alamar organoponic in Havana, Cuba, typical phytoplasma-symptoms of litte leaf and witches' broom were observed in all basil plants used as barrier crops. Leaf samples from 27 plants with symptoms and 16 apparently healthy (symptomless) plants were collected and the DNA extracted. The highest similarity (99%) was to that of a 16SrI group phytoplasma (Aster Yellows; Candidatus Phytoplasma asteris) affecting watercress. This is thought to be the first record of a new disease for which the name basil little leaf is proposed.
Arocha, Y.; Piñol, B.; Picornell, B.; Almeida, R.; Jones, P.; Boa, E. Basil little leaf: a new disease associated with a phytoplasma of the 16SrI (Aster Yellows) group in Cuba. Plant Pathology (2006) 55 (6) 822-822. [DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-3059.2006.01481.x]