A perspective on current therapeutic molecule screening methods against 'Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus', the presumed causative agent of citrus Huanglongbing. Academic Article uri icon


  • Huanglongbing (HLB), referred to as citrus greening disease, is a bacterial disease impacting citrus production worldwide and fatal in young trees and certain varieties. In some areas, the disease is devastating the citrus industry. A successful solution to HLB will be measured in economics: Citrus growers need treatments that improve tree health, fruit production, and most importantly economic yield. The profitability of citrus groves is the ultimate metric that truly matters when searching for solutions to HLB. Scientific approaches used in the laboratory, greenhouse, or field trials are critical to discovery of those solutions and to estimate the likelihood of success of a treatment aimed for commercialization. Researchers and the citrus industry use a number of proxy evaluations of potential HLB solutions and understanding the strengths and limitations of each assay as well as how best to compare different assays is critical for decision making to advance therapies into field trials and commercialization. This perspective aims to help the reader compare and understand the limitations of different proxy evaluation systems based on the treatment and evaluation under consideration. The researcher must determine the suitability of one or more of these metrics to identify treatments and predict the usefulness of these treatments in having an eventual impact on citrus production and HLB mitigation. As therapies advance to field trials in the next few years, a re-evaluation of these metrics will be useful to guide future research efforts on strategies to mitigate HLB and vascular bacterial pathogens in other perennial crops.

published proceedings

  • Phytopathology

altmetric score

  • 3.35

author list (cited authors)

  • Kennedy, J. P., Wood, K., Pitino, M., Mandadi, K., Igwe, D. O., Shatters, R., ... Heck, M.

citation count

  • 1

complete list of authors

  • Kennedy, John Paul||Wood, Kimberly||Pitino, Marco||Mandadi, Kranthi||Igwe, David O||Shatters, Robert||Widmer, Timothy L||Niedz, Randall||Heck, Michelle

publication date

  • February 2023