Identification and pathogenicity of microorganisms affecting purple passion fruit in Colombia.
Purple passion fruit (Passiflora edulis f. edulis Sims, known in Colombia as "gulupa") is an increasingly important crop in Colombia, as seen by an increase in the area under cultivation. This recent prominence coincides with a low number of existing technologies related to the cultivation of the fruit, resulting in a lack of knowledge about its associated pathogens and the absence of rapid and precise diagnostic tests. The objective of this study was to determine the pathogenicity of distinct microorganisms isolated from purple passion fruit samples, some of which had not been previously reported in Colombia. The sampling was performed in seven plots located in two regions of the Colombian Antioquia. With the use of field symptomatology, the isolation of microorganisms, morphological characteristics, molecular analysis, and pathogenicity tests, the pathogen species Phytophthora nicotianae var. parasitica, Colletotrichum gloeosporioides sensu lato, and Phytophthora drechsleri were identified for the first time in Colombia. These pathogens cause lesions in fruits, with an incidence of 10.9, 7.6, and 2.8%, respectively. This is also the first report on a global level of Phytophthora drechsleri causing a disease in this plant species.