First report of an association of 'Candidatus Phytoplasma australasia' with cashew nut inflorescence decline in Tripura, a northeastern state of India.
In June 2018, during a survey of cashew nut orchards (Anacardium occidentale) in Nagicherra, West Tripura, India, cashew nut plants were found exhibiting deformed nuts and inflorescence decline (CaID) with prevalence of 5.6% (in a 1-ha area), which were suggestive of phytoplasma infection. Three symptomatic and asymptomatic cashew nut samples were collected, and DNA was extracted from tender shoots using CTAB. The causal pathogen was isolated and identified as Candidatus Phytoplasma australasia based on 16S ribosomal RNA gene sequences and phylogenetic analysis. This is thought to be the first report of the association of Ca. P. australasia (16SrII-D) with inflorescence decline symptoms of cashew nut in the world.