First report of Apricot latent virus and Plum bark necrosis stem pitting-associated virus in apricot from Spain.
A survey was conducted during the spring of 2008 in orchards in the region of Murcia, Spain, to assess the incidence of several stone fruit viruses. Leaf and fruit samples from 160 trees from 40 orchards were collected randomly for reverse transcription-PCR analysis. None of the 6 infected trees were associated with any particular field symptoms. Five infected trees were cv. Bolida and one was native cv. Murciana, which was infected with Apricot latent virus (ApLV). All infected trees were located in geographically separated orchards. The incidence of ApLV and Plum bark necrosis stem pitting-associated virus (PBNSPaV) was 1.25 and 2.5%, respectively. The low incidence of both viruses together with the scattered geographical distribution could be due to the recent introduction of virus-contaminated plants, although it cannot be excluded that it is a consequence of a low dissemination rate. Even though no symptoms were observed, it cannot be discarded that the infection could affect fruit production or flowering or even cause a synergistic effect in mixed infection with other stone fruit viruses, a risk especially relevant considering the total area of cultivated apricot. This is thought to be the first report of ApLV and PBNSPaV in Spain.