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Is Xanthomonas citri subsp. citri (Xcc) knocking at the doors of the Mediterranean basin?

Caruso P., Pavone R., Licciardello C., Russo M.P., Catara V., Licciardello G., Pruvost O., Robene I., Cubero J., Redondo C., Aysan Y., Cetinkaya-Yildiz R., Horuz S., Urso A., Timparano G.. 2017. In : 15th Congress of the Mediterranean Phytopathological Union: Plant health sustaining Mediterranean ecosystems Abstracts book. Cordoba : MPU, p. 56-56. 15th Congress of the Mediterranean Phytopathological Union, 2017-06-20/2017-06-23, Cordoba (Espagne).

Mediterranean basin is free of Citrus Bacterial Canker (CBC) a citrus disease caused by Xanthomonas citri subsp. citri (Xcc) and X. fuscans subsp. auratifolii (Xfa). ln 2014, EFSA highlighted ornamental rutaceous species (ORS) as possible pathway for CBC entry. ORPRAMed research project is underway to evaluate the risk of introduction of Xcc and Xfa through ORS in Europe. ORPRAMed partners are focusing on ORS not covered by 2000/29EC Directive through phytopatological, molecular, genetic, detection and economic approaches. Herein, we have analysed the trade flows in vegetal material for non-food uses. In particular, we have considered the import flows from countries where Xcc is classified as present. From UN-ComTrade dataset (2015), with Code 06, Mediterranean countries reported to introduce over 8.7 million kg from areas where Xcc is present, for an overall value of 46.0 million $. We also have to include here the re-exportation of plant material, from these countries, originated formerly in other areas that is estimated in 156,384 kg for a value of 0.276 million $. Moreover, within the project a field survey was conducted in Turkey in order to exclude the presence of CBC, due to its vicinity to infected areas. In the survey carried out in Adana, Mersin and Hatay provinces, 61 commercial nurseries and about 8500 hectares of citrus orchards were screened and disease symptoms were not observed. In the same context, growers and the nurserymen were informed about the possible introduction risk of this severe citrus disease.

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