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Metagenomic sequencing for rapid identification of Xylella fastidiosa from leaf samples

Abstract : ABSTRACT Xylella fastidiosa ( Xf ) is a globally distributed plant pathogenic bacterium. The primary control strategy for Xf diseases is eradicating infected plants; therefore, timely and accurate detection is necessary to prevent crop losses and further pathogen dispersal. Conventional Xf diagnostics primarily relies on quantitative PCR (qPCR) assays. However, these methods do not consider new or emerging variants due to pathogen genetic recombination and sensitivity limitations. We developed and tested a metagenomics pipeline using in-house short-read sequencing as a complementary approach for affordable, fast, and highly accurate Xf detection. We used metagenomics to identify Xf to strain level in single and mixed infected plant samples at concentrations as low as one picogram of bacterial DNA per gram of tissue. We also tested naturally infected samples from various plant species originating from Europe and the United States. We identified Xf subspecies in samples previously considered inconclusive with real-time PCR (Cq > 35). Overall, we showed the versatility of the pipeline by using different plant hosts and DNA extraction methods. Our pipeline provides taxonomic and functional information for Xf diagnostics without extensive knowledge of the disease. We hope this pipeline can be used for early detection of Xf and incorporated as a tool to inform disease management strategies. IMPORTANCE Xylella fastidiosa (Xf) destructive outbreaks in Europe highlight this pathogen’s capacity to expand its host range and geographical distribution. The current disease diagnostic approaches are limited by a multiple-step process, biases to known sequences, and detection limits. We developed a low-cost, user-friendly metagenomic sequencing tool for Xf detection. In less than three days, we were able to identify Xf subspecies and strains in field-collected samples. Overall, our pipeline is a diagnostics tool that could be easily extended to other plant-pathogen interactions and implemented for emerging plant threat surveillance.
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https://hal.inrae.fr/hal-03314680
Contributor : Olivier Dupre <>
Submitted on : Thursday, August 5, 2021 - 10:45:25 AM
Last modification on : Tuesday, August 24, 2021 - 3:31:58 AM

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Mary Ann Hansen, Francesca Peduto Hand, Veronica Roman-Reyna, Enora Dupas, Sophie Cesbron, et al.. Metagenomic sequencing for rapid identification of Xylella fastidiosa from leaf samples. 2021. ⟨hal-03314680⟩

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