ISOLATION AND MOLECULAR DETERMINATION OF THE FIRE BLIGHT PATHOGEN ERWINIA AMYLOVORA ISOLATED FROM APPLE TREES IN THE REPUBLIC OF MACEDONIA
S. Mitrev, E. Kostadinovska
Fire blight is a bacterial disease caused by Erwinia amylovora. It is one of the most destructive diseases of pome fruit trees, particularly affecting apple and pear trees. In the present study, 15 bacterial isolates were isolated from apple orchards displaying fire blight disease symptoms in the summer of 2015. They were identified as E. amylovora based on morphological, pathological and biochemical (BIOLOG) analyses, including PCR assays. The molecular characterisation of these isolates using PCR were performed with specific primers for conventional (single) PCR, as well as from PCR amplification of the 16S rRNA gene using universal primers. The PCR products were positive and had the expected length of 1.1 kb. There is little information about the presence of E. amylovora on apple trees in Macedonia. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of fire blight in apples caused by E. amylovora in the Republic of Macedonia.