In September 2007, smallholder farm fields of chilli pepper (Capsicum spp.) and tamarillo (Cyphomandra betacea) around Bunuraya area, North Sumatera, Indonesia, showed symptoms of stunting, severe leaf mottling, and bunching of small mottled leaves. Up to 100% of the plants were affected. Leaf samples from randomly collected symptomatic chilli and tamarillo were analysed by nested PCR using phytoplasma 16S rDNA universal primers (R16F2m/R1 followed by fU5/rU3), RFLP, and sequenced. PCR amplicons and identical RFLP profiles (HaeIII, RsaI and AluI) were obtained for symptomatic tamarillo (3/4) and chilli (4/4), but not for asymptomatic samples. PCR products of a representative tamarillo and chilli were purified and sequenced. The phytoplasma 16S rDNA sequences from chilli (EU273881) and tamarillo (EU273882) were 99% identical to each other, and to members of the group 16SrII, 'Candidatus Phytoplasma aurantifolia' [Phytoplasma aurantifolia]. This is thought to be the first report of group 16SrII infecting chilli and tamarillo in Indonesia, and the first world report for tamarillo.
Harling, R.; Arocha, Y.; Harju, V.; Tobing, C.; Boa, E.; Kelly, P.; Reeder, R. First report of 16SrII &#8216;Candidatus Phytoplasma aurantifolia&#8217; infecting chilli and tamarillo in Indonesia. Plant Pathology (2009) 58 (4) 791-791. [DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-3059.2009.02074.x]