Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Bacterial blight on Dracaena sanderiana caused by Burkholderia cepacia.

Abstract

In 2018, severe bacterial blight was observed on Dracaena sanderiana plants imported and cultivated by a commercial nursery in Jinju, South Korea. This indoor plant is popularly grown for indoor air purification to prevent sick building syndrome (SBS). The diseased plants had severe blight symptoms, with leaf chlorosis and crumpling of stem and leaves. To identify the causal agent, we performed bacterial isolation, pathogenicity tests, physiological analysis, sequencing of the 16S rRNA region and recA gene, and phylogenetic analysis; the bacterial pathogen was identified as Burkholderia cepacia. This is the first report of bacterial blight on D. sanderiana caused by B. cepacia. Although there is no clear epidemiological information on the inoculum source, the recent occurrence of the disease indicates that B. cepacia is a potential threat to the production of indoor dracaena plants, which are increasingly used for air purification in SBS. Because D. sanderiana is grown in indoor living spaces, B. cepacia infection could threaten human health as well.