Citrus rootstock breeding: response of four allotetraploid somatic hybrids to Citrus tristeza virus induced infections

Stefano Panno, Salvatore Davino, Loredana Abbate, Salvatore Davino, Francesco Mercati, Stefano Panno, Sergio Fatta Del Bosco, Francesco Mercati

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5 Citations (Scopus)


Four allotetraploid somatic hybrids of citrus,with potential for rootstock improvement, have beenevaluated for their response to Citrus tristeza virus(CTV) infection. CTV is the most important viral pathogenaffecting citrus production worldwide. Somaticcombinations of ‘Milam’ lemon (Citrus jambhiriLush.) + Sour orange (C. aurantium L Osb.),Calamondin (C. madurensis Lour.) + ‘Keen’ sour orange(C. aurantium L.), Calamondin + ‘Femminello‘ lemon(C. limon L. Burm. F.) and Cleopatra mandarin(C. reshni Hort. ex Tan.) + ‘Femminello’ lemon, werestudied. Plants were grafted with CTV-infectedBValencia^ sweet orange budwood. Two different CTVstrains collected in Sicily, considered as Bmild^ andBsevere^, were used to inoculate candidate rootstocks.The goal of this work is to select a rootstock alternativeto CTV susceptible Sour orange, still the prevalent rootstockin the Mediterranean basin. DAS-ELISA and realtimePCR assays confirmed a decreased level of viralreplication in tested somatic hybrids, as compared to thesusceptible genotypes sour orange and Citrus alemow.The Calamondin+‘Keen’ sour orange genotype did notsupport any replication in either CTV strain. Somatichybridization is confirmed to be an effective tool toobtain functionally new rootstocks. Our results can beconsidered a starting point to open new approaches forthe Mediterranean citrus industry. Indeed, the four somatichybrids have been propagated for agronomicalmultisite evaluation trials to further assess if their horticulturalperformance, fruit holding capacity, and soiladaptation are adequate to replace sour orange.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)837-847
Number of pages11
JournalEuropean Journal of Plant Pathology
Publication statusPublished - 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Plant Science
  • Horticulture


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