Erwinia amylovora, the causal agent of fire blight disease of apples and pears, is one of the most important plant bacterial pathogens with worldwide economic significance. In this chapter, the author describes up-to-date information about the genomes of E. amylovora and related Erwinia species primarily associated with pome fruit trees, provides recent developments in genome-enabled understanding of E. amylovora virulence, and highlights latest comparative and functional genomic studies of E. amylovora, including proteomics and transcriptomics, in understanding the biology, population diversity, and evolution of this important group of pathogens. The chapter also summarizes the current progress in understanding of the pathogen and its virulence mechanism from genome sequencing data, as well as the potential evolutionary origin of these Erwinia species. In the introduction part, the chapter contains comprehensive information about the distribution, economic losses, and spread of the fire blight disease, the characteristics of the pathogen as well as its key features associated with virulence factors and regulatory systems, including type III secretion systems and the exopolysaccharide amylovoran. Future perspectives and research directions from systems biology to host-pathogen interactions are also suggested.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)