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Molecular Characterization of a Phytoplasma Associated with Potato Witches’-broom Disease in Iran

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Potato plants showing symptoms suggestive of potato witches’-broom disease including witches’-broom, little leaf, stunting, yellowing and swollen shoots formation in tubers were observed in the central Iran. For phytoplasma detection, Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) and nested PCR assays were performed using phytoplasma universal primer pair P1/P7, followed by primer pair R16F2n/R16R2. Random fragment length polymorphism analysis of potato phytoplasma isolates collected from different production areas using the CfoI restriction enzyme indicated that potato witches’-broom phytoplasma isolate (PoWB) is genetically different from phytoplasmas associated with potato purple top disease in Iran. Sequence analysis of the partial 16S rRNA gene amplified by nested PCR indicated that ‘Candidatus Phytoplasma trifolii’ is associated with potato witches’-broom disease in Iran. This is the first report of potato witches’-broom disease in Iran.

Keywords: Iran; potato; potato witches’-broom; ‘Candidatus Phytoplasma trifolii’

Document Type: Short Communication


Affiliations: 1: Authors’ addresses: Department of Plant Protection, College of Agriculture, Isfahan University of Technology, Isfahan, Iran 2: Department of Biotechnology, College of Agriculture, Isfahan University of Technology, Isfahan, Iran (correspondence to Parham Hosseini. ), Email:

Publication date: February 1, 2011

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