Current issue: 54(2)
Under compilation: 54(3)
We investigated the causative agent of a disease outbreak affecting small-leaved limes (Tilia cordata Mill.) and resulting in darkening of the leaf petioles and excessive defoliation during summer 2016 in southern Finland. The fungal species composition of the symptomatic petioles was examined by culture isolation and molecular identification using ITS rDNA sequences, which revealed the most prevalent fungal species present in the petioles as Apiognomonia errabunda (Roberge) Höhn. Based on reviewing curated herbarium specimens deposited at the Universities of Helsinki and Turku, A. errabunda is native and widely distributed in small-leaved limes in Finland, and occasionally infects also other broadleaved trees, including Quercus robur L. and ornamental species of Tilia L. and Fagus L. The ITS sequence analysis conducted during this study revealed minor within-species polymorphisms similar to those observed earlier in the Central European and Russian populations of A. errabunda, and reports the first nucleotide sequences of this species from the Nordic countries.
Multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) allows amplification of two or more pair of primers in parallel for amplification of multiple target sequences in a single reaction tube. In this study, we combined existing simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers (nuclear microsatellites) in the novel combination of multiplex PCR to study the population genetics of common walnut from Croatia. From twenty one tested SSR markers, eleven produced satisfactory results in one multiplex PCR. Population genetic results achieved from 15 samples of Croatian common walnut showed moderate genetic variability (average value: He 0.473; Ho 0.568). Our multiplex PCR allowed cost effective work concerning chemicals, plastic ware, device, and working time producing optimal results. The optimized multiplex PCR represented the best combination of eleven SSR primers for genotyping common walnut in a single PCR reaction.