Variations in Zebra Chip Disease Expression and Tuber Biochemistry in Response to Vector Density. Academic Article uri icon


  • Zebra chip (ZC) disease, caused by 'Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum', which is transmitted by the potato psyllid, has negatively affected potato production in the United States for over a decade. The present study was conducted to evaluate the affect of the number of bacteriliferous psyllids on 'Ca. L. solanacearum' titer, levels of amino acids, carbohydrates, phenolics, and, subsequently, symptom severity in potato tubers. 'Red La Soda' and 'Russet Norkotah' potato were planted in the field and later inoculated with 'Ca. L. solanacearum' using 5, 10, and 30 bacteriliferous potato psyllids. In both cultivars, the increase in the number of psyllids resulted in elevated 'Ca. L. solanacearum' titer and symptom severity. In the cases of amino acids and reducing sugars, responses to vector density appeared to be cultivar specific. Overall, phenolic compounds showed a consistent increase following infection, a response that, in most cases, was positively correlated with the number of infective psyllids. Results quantified the impact of the number of infective psyllids on 'Ca. L. solanacearum' titer and biochemical content of infected tubers previously shown to be correlated with the degree of symptom expression. Managing vector numbers is currently the only effective approach for minimizing losses to ZC in grower's fields. However, our findings on physiological responses to vector density suggest that, in combination with chemical control, development of more tolerant or resistant potato genotypes, with emphasis on interrupting pathways that are associated with increased phenolic activity levels, may lead to more sustainable management of ZC in the future.

published proceedings

  • Phytopathology

altmetric score

  • 0.75

author list (cited authors)

  • Rashed, A., Wallis, C. M., Workneh, F., Paetzold, L. i., & Rush, C. M.

citation count

  • 4

complete list of authors

  • Rashed, Arash||Wallis, Christopher M||Workneh, Fekede||Paetzold, Li||Rush, Charles M

publication date

  • August 2016