Maize bush stunt and corn stunt: Diseases of corn caused by molicutes

Nelson Sidnei Massola Júnior


Maize Bushy Stunt and Corn Stunt are diseases of corn caused respectively by a phytoplasma (maize bushy stunt phytoplasma) and by Spiroplasma kunkelii. Both agents are restricted to the floem vessels of diseased plants. The leafhopper Dalbulus maidis is the vector of the diseases. The diseases are very harmfull to corn crops and can cause severe losses. Their importance increased very much in the last years mainly due to the continuous crops, which allow the perpetuation of corn, pathogens and vector over the year. Diseased plants show shortening, redening or yellowing and excessive proliferation of ears, among others symptoms. However, symptoms are variable according to the causal agent, environmental conditions and corn genotype. Correct diagnosis of the diseases has been reached with ELISA (“enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay”) and PCR (“polymerase chain reaction”). The use of resistant genotypes of corn is the main strategy of control of the diseases.


Corn crops; Molicutes; Spiroplasma kunkelii; Phytoplasma.


Semina: Ciênc. Agrár.
Londrina - PR
E-ISSN 1679-0359
DOI: 10.5433/1679-0359
Este obra está licenciado com uma Licença Creative Commons Atribuição-NãoComercial 4.0 Internacional