Phytoplasma research begins to bloom (75). Indeed, this review shows that substantial progress has been made with the identification of phytoplasma effectors that alter flower development, induce witches' broom, affect leaf shape, and modify plant-insect interactions. Phytoplasmas have a unique life cycle among pathogens, as they invade organisms of two distinct kingdoms, namely plants (Plantae) and insects (Animalia), and replicate intracellularly in both. Phytoplasmas release effectors into host cells of plants and insects to target host molecules, and in plants these effectors unload from the phloem to access distal tissues and alter basic developmental processes. The effectors provide phytoplasmas with a fitness advantage by modulating their plant and insect hosts. We expect that further research on the functional characterization of phytoplasma effectors will generate new knowledge that is relevant to fundamental aspects of plant sciences and entomology, and for agriculture by improving yields of crops affected by phytoplasma diseases.


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Data & Media loading...

  • Article Type: Review Article
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error