dnature diagnostics & research

Liberibacter solanacearum


Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum was discovered in 2008 by a NZ team led by Dr Lia Liefting (MAF). It was subsequently found to be the cause of the debilitating potato disease 'zebra chip' that has affected the USA industry since 2000.

Liberibacter solanacearum is transmitted by the tomato potato psyllid and infects various members of the solanaceous family including:

  • potatoes
  • tomatoes
  • capsicum
  • tamarillo
  • chilli
  • cape gooseberry

After the discovery of Liberibacter, a phytoplasma, which is a bacteria-like organism similar to Liberibacter, was also found to infect potatoes.  We are also able to test this.

For testing of Liberibacter or phytoplasma, we require either stems from plants or trees, tubers, fried potato or leaves. We can also test the psyllid vector (e.g. from sticky traps) to see if the population has acquired Liberibacter.

Download our liberibacter/psyllid submission form

For pricing details and any other testing queries, please contact us on 0800 362 8873 (0800 DNATURE) or email us