João Guilherme de Moraes Pontes 1 , Pedro Henrique Vendramini 2 , 3 , Laura Soler Fernandes 1 , Fabricio Henrique de Souza 4 , Eduardo Jorge Pilau 5 , Marcos Nogueira Eberlin 2 , 3 , Rodrigo Facchini Magnani 6 , Nelson Arno Wulff 6 , Taicia Pacheco Fill , 1
10 August 2020
Huanglongbing (HLB) is a disease of worldwide incidence that affects orange trees, among other commercial varieties, implicating in great losses to the citrus industry. The disease is transmitted through Diaphorina citri vector, which inoculates Candidatus Liberibacter spp. in the plant sap. HLB disease lead to blotchy mottle and fruit deformation, among other characteristic symptoms, which induce fruit drop and affect negatively the juice quality. Nowadays, the disease is controlled by eradication of sick, symptomatic plants, coupled with psyllid control. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is the technique most used to diagnose the disease; however, this methodology involves high cost and extensive sample preparation. Mass spectrometry imaging (MSI) technique is a fast and easily handled sample analysis that, in the case of Huanglongbing allows the detection of increased concentration of metabolites associated to the disease, including quinic acid, phenylalanine, nobiletin and sucrose. The metabolites abieta-8,11,13-trien-18-oic acid, suggested by global natural product social molecular networking (GNPS) analysis, and 4-acetyl-1-methylcyclohexene showed a higher distribution in symptomatic leaves and have been directly associated to HLB disease. Desorption electrospray ionization coupled to mass spectrometry imaging (DESI-MSI) allows the rapid and efficient detection of biomarkers in sweet oranges infected with Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus and can be developed into a real-time, fast-diagnostic technique.