V.C. Conci, M.C. Perotto, E. Cafrune, P. Lunello
Garlic is affected by a viral mixture including mainly Potyvirus, Carlavirus and Allexivirus which causes a 78% bulb weight reduction. New cultivars are annually subjected to the virus free plant production process. Thermotherapy is evaluated for each cultivar and depending on the results; it is applied before meristem extraction. Each in vitro plant is evaluated by immunosorbent electron microscopy plus decoration (ISEM-D) with the following antisera: Onion yellow dwarf virus (OYDV), Leek yellow stripe virus, Garlic common latent virus, Shallot latent virus, Garlic mite borne filamentous virus, and “mix-antiserum” (obtained from garlic infected with the virus mixture which infects this crop naturally). IC-RT-PCR or RT-PCR is frequently used at this stage. The obtained garlic plants are classified into 2 categories: OYDV virus-free garlic plants, and virus-free garlic plants from all viruses detected with the antisera above mentioned. Both plant categories are in vitro micropropagated with an increase rate between 1.1-10 every two months depending on the cultivar and the multiplication number. The hardening procedure starts in vitro with subculture at a special medium for either bulblets induction or more vigorous plant that tolerates the soil transplant. The in vitro bulblets are planted in sterile soil. The hardened plants are transferred to soil and kept in wet chamber 15-20 days and gradually adapted to natural conditions. The ex vitro plants are kept under gauzehouse until the cultivar cycle is completed and they are individually analyzed, by DAS-ELISA and the doubtful plants by ISEM-D. After that, they are multiplied under gauzehouse or given to growers who carry out the multiplication in areas isolated from Alliaceae until they get enough bulbs to start a commercial production. The procedure success is periodically tested by DAS-ELISA.
Conci, V.C., Perotto, M.C., Cafrune, E. and Lunello, P. (2005). PROGRAM FOR INTENSIVE PRODUCTION OF VIRUS-FREE GARLIC PLANTS. Acta Hortic. 688, 195-200
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2005.688.25
Allium sativum, meristem culture, Potyvirus, Carlavirus, Allexivirus

Acta Horticulturae