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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BARC) » Beltsville Agricultural Research Center » Mycology and Nematology Genetic Diversity and Biology Laboratory » Research » Research Project #433625

Research Project: Serological Detection Tools for Early Detection of Boxwood Blight

Location: Mycology and Nematology Genetic Diversity and Biology Laboratory

Project Number: 8042-22000-298-21-I
Project Type: Interagency Reimbursable Agreement

Start Date: Aug 30, 2017
End Date: Aug 29, 2018

ARS will conduct research that will lead to a serology-based detection assay that can be used for diagnosis of the boxwood blight pathogen. The goals of this research are: (1) Generate polyclonal and monoclonal antibodies for boxwood blight fungi; and (2) optimize ELISA protocols for boxwood blight pathogen detection.

To address the shortcomings of available nucleic acid-based diagnostic tests for boxwood blight, ARS will develop a serology-based detection test, implemented as an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Importantly, this serological test will rely on colorimetric detection, to allow for the greatest number of practitioners, regulatory agents and diagnosticians to utilize the assay. Development of the serology-based detection assay is a multicomponent approach, involving identification of a set of candidate proteins with properties that predict antigenicity and availability for detection; are target specific, are expressed at high enough levels in planta for sensitive detection; followed by testing and optimization.