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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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Research Project: Improved Diagnostics for Phytophthora Plant Pathogens Important to California Agriculture

Location: Crop Improvement and Protection Research

2013 Annual Report


1a.Objectives (from AD-416):
Plant pathogens in the genus Phytophthora have a significant impact on a wide range of California specialty crops either by their direct effect on plant health and yield reductions or indirectly with regulatory restrictions on the movement/shipment of plant material intended to prevent pathogen introduction or spread. Current detection techniques do not adequately fulfill the need for sensitive, accurate, rapid and cost effective detection of these pathogens, which hinders efforts at disease management. This proposal will address this by expanding a current research project on molecular detection of Phytophthora spp. to include additional species and detection platforms. The collaboration established in this agreement will provide support for this objective by sharing expertise with the genus and assisting in the development/validation of molecular diagnostic markers.


1b.Approach (from AD-416):
Both genus and species specific diagnostic markers for Phytophthora spp. have been developed using a TaqMan real time PCR assay based on mitochondrial gene order differences. This project will expand the scope of the prior work by developing additional species specific markers and exploring isothermal amplification procedures to simplify use of the diagnostic assays. The collaborator in this proposal used to work in the PI's lab on the initial phases of this project.


3.Progress Report:

This agreement was established in support of objective 2 of the parent project, the goal being to develop molecular diagnostic tools for the identification of emerging diseases of vegetables and strawberry, and use these tools in the development of management strategies as alternatives to methyl bromide. The agreement between agencies was just signed and fund transfer has been requested. The collaborator has been co-writing a manuscript describing current progress on the molecular diagnostic assay and has been assisting with development of additional TaqMan probes.


Last Modified: 10/19/2014
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