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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Fire Blight Management in the 21st Century: Using New Technologies That Enhance Host Resistance

Authors
item Norelli, John (jay)
item Jones, Alan - MICHIGAN STATE UNIVERSITY
item Aldwinckle, Herb - CORNELL UNIVERSITY

Submitted to: Plant Disease
Publication Type: Review Article
Publication Acceptance Date: April 1, 2003
Publication Date: July 1, 2003
Citation: NORELLI, J.L., JONES, A.L., ALDWINCKLE, H.S. FIRE BLIGHT MANAGEMENT IN THE 21ST CENTURY: USING NEW TECHNOLOGIES THAT ENHANCE HOST RESISTANCE IN APPLE. PLANT DISEASE. July 2003, Vol. 87, no. 7; pgs. 756-765.

Technical Abstract: This manuscript describes the development of new tools for fire blight management that enhance host resistance. Fire blight has been known as a destructive disease of apple and pear for over 200 years. Although increasing host resistance has been recognized as an important component of fire blight management, its application has been limited by a lack of resistant cultivars suited to commercial needs and by a lack of management practices that could effectively increase resistance. Recent advances have made it feasible to change this paradigm in the 21st century. First, apple rootstock breeding programs have developed dwarfing rootstocks that are resistant to fire blight and are currently becoming available for commercial use. Second, the feasibility of genetically engineering commercial apple cultivars for increased fire blight resistance has been demonstrated and transgenic apple plants are now undergoing field trials. Third, chemical treatments that enhance host resistance have been demonstrated to be useful in the control of fire blight. Many of the new technologies we discuss are still at the early stages of development and are either not available or proven in the marketplace. However, as our understanding of host resistance mechanisms continues to advance, technologies to enhancing host resistance will add a new dimension to fire blight control in the 21st century.

Last Modified: 8/29/2014
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