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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BARC) » Beltsville Agricultural Research Center » National Germplasm Resources Laboratory » Research » Research Project #441000

Research Project: Diagnostic Support for New and Emerging Pathogens to Facilitate the Safe Importation and Exchange of Plant Germplasm

Location: National Germplasm Resources Laboratory

Project Number: 8042-22000-302-025-I
Project Type: Interagency Reimbursable Agreement

Start Date: Oct 1, 2020
End Date: Sep 30, 2021

This agreement is being established to provide diagnosis and detection of diseases and pathogens of plant germplasm that is subject to federal quarantine regulations. ARS National Germplasm Resources Laboratory (NGRL) will collaborate with APHIS scientists to develop and transfer techniques that enhance the speed, reliability, and sensitivity with which quarantine pathogens can be detected. This research facilitates the safeguarding of American agriculture by helping to intercept diseases and infectious agents that could threaten domestic production and/or natural ecosystems.

Analyses of the host-pathogen interactions and their genetic diversity will be used to select the most effective strategy for pathogen detection. In many cases, the approach will develop techniques that detect, amplify, or sequence pathogen-specific nucleic acids (DNA or RNA), although protein based detection approaches may be pursued in some cases. ARS will consult with APHIS scientists regularly to discuss techniques and exchange information. Infected plant materials that can be used for research and/or as controls for indexing will also be mutually exchanged in accordance with the terms of pathogen permits. Protocols and detection tools will be transferred in a standard format that facilitates both implementation in testing schemes as well as possible joint publication in peer-reviewed literature.