Type: Chapter

Cocoa diseases: witches' broom


Jorge Teodoro De Souza

Universidade Federal do Recôncavo da Bahia

Fernando Pereira Monteiro

Federal University of Lavras, Brazil

Maria Alves Ferreira

Federal University of Lavras, Brazil

Karina Peres Gramacho


Edna Dora Martins Newman Luz

Comissão Executiva do Plano da Lavoura Cacaueira (CEPLAC), Brazil

Publication date:

08 August 2018

ID: 9781838793586

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Witches' broom, caused by the hemibiotrophic basidiomycete Moniliophthora perniciosa, is one of the most important cocoa diseases. The pathogen co-evolved with cocoa in the Amazon River basin and is currently restricted to South and Central America. Other cocoa-producing regions of the world are at risk because the introduction of the pathogen would greatly impact cocoa production. In the last few years new technologies such as NGS, bioinformatics, transformation, and the establishment of a model host-plant interaction accelerated the gain of information and have enabled significant advances in our knowledge of witches’ broom. In this chapter, we review the information on witches' broom, including the latest information on disease physiology, genomics and transcriptomics, diversity, and management practices.

Table of contents

1 Introduction
2 Geographical distribution and historical perspective
3 Pathogen taxonomy, biology and disease cycle
4 Diversity, host range and symptomatology
5 Omics of M. perniciosa
6 Fungal pathogenicity and disease physiology
7 Plant development and disease epidemiology
8 Disease control: phytosanitation, and chemical and biological control
9 Disease control: genetic resistance and integrated management
10 Concluding remarks and outlook
11 Where to look for further information
12 Acknowledgements
13 References