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FEMS Microbiol Lett. 2009 Jun;295(1):129-34. doi: 10.1111/j.1574-6968.2009.01597.x.

Grapevine xylem sap enhances biofilm development by Xylella fastidiosa.

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Department of Plant Pathology and Plant-Microbe Biology, New York State Agricultural Experiment Station, Cornell University, Geneva, NY 14456, USA.


Xylella fastidiosa is able to form biofilms within xylem vessels of many economically important crops. Vessel blockage is believed to be a major contributor to disease development caused by this bacterium. This report shows that Vitis riparia xylem sap increases growth rate and induces a characteristic biofilm architecture as compared with biofilms formed in PD2 and PW media. In addition, stable cultures could be maintained, frozen and reestablished in xylem sap. These findings are important as xylem sap provides a natural medium that facilitates the identification of virulence determinants of Pierce's disease.

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