Virus diseases of fig and their control
Different syndromes of a putative viral origin are comprised under the name of Fig mosaic disease (FMD), an aetiologically ill-defined infectious disease of fig trees, reported from all fig-growing countries in the world. In fact, at least 10 different viruses and three viroids have been detected to date in FMD-affected trees: five closterovirids (Fig leaf mottle-associated virus 1 and 2, Fig mild mottle-associated virus, Arkansas closterovirus 1 and 2); a Trichovirus (Fig latent virus 1) and several isometric, bacilliform or enveloped viruses (Fig criptic virus, Fig fleck-associated virus, Fig badnavirus 1, Fig mosaic virus). Of these, Fig mosaic virus (genus Emaravirus) is the one with the highest association with FMD. Fig badnavirus 1, whose DNA is integrated in the fig genome, may not induce a disease even when virus particles are expressed in fig seedlings. The development of typical FMD symptoms in seedlings in which FMV was transmitted by its vector (the eriophyid mite Aceria ficus) support the conclusion that FMV is indeed one, if not the major, agent of FMD. Virtually nothing is known on the pathogenicity and epidemiology of the other fig-infecting viruses. FMD has an extremely high incidence in nature and symptomless trees are often only apparently healthy. Thus, any campaign for the improvement of the fig industry should utilize sanitation techniques for the production of certified healthy stocks for propagation and trade.
Minafra, A., Savino, V. and Martelli, G.P. 2017. Virus diseases of fig and their control. Acta Hort. (ISHS) 1173:237-244
fig mosaic, viruses, viroids, epidemiology, sanitation, certification