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Bacterial Fruit Blotch

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Acidovorax avenae subsp. citrulli (Aac/Ac) is the causative bacterial pathogen for Bacterial Fruit Blotch (BFB).  The bacterium infects crops such as watermelon, melon (cantaloupe, honeydew), cucumber, pumpkin, squash, gourds, citronmelon and other cucurbits. Infection with the bacterium can lead to significant economic losses in cucurbit production, ranging up to 90% of marketable yield in watermelon fields.

At Eurofins BioDiagnostics we detect the pathogen utilizing two methods, Grow-out/ Symptomatology and seed-wash PCR.

The commonly used method Grow-out/Symptomatology takes place in a greenhouse, where the seeds are sown and evaluated after a set amount of time under strict environmental conditions. The method is most utilized because it can distinguish between pathogenic living cells of Ac and dead cells. After evaluation “suspect” seedlings are further confirmed using internationally recognized methods (PCR and Immunostrips) and can be further confirmed using a pathogenicity test.

The seed-wash PCR is commonly used as a “prescreening” method to make rapid decisions before continuing with other confirmation steps such as the Grow-out. The seed-wash PCR utilizes National Seed Health System (NSHS) protocols for quality, repeatable results.  

  • BDI offers Bacterial Fruit Blotch testing for the following crops: