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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Frederick, Maryland » Foreign Disease-Weed Science Research » Research » Research Project #444536

Research Project: Tools for the Identification and Detection of Graminicolous Downy Mildews, including the Select Agent Peronosclerospora philippinensis

Location: Foreign Disease-Weed Science Research

Project Number: 8044-22000-052-013-I
Project Type: Interagency Reimbursable Agreement

Start Date: Aug 11, 2023
End Date: Aug 13, 2024

The primary goal of this agreement is to improve U.S. capabilities to detect and address threatened incursion of the critically important graminicolous downy mildew (GDM) pathogens, including the Select Agent Peronosclerospora philippinensis. The objectives for this work are to: 1) Establish reference strains of collaborator-contributed cereal and grass samples inside BSL-3 containment; 2) Contribute verification data to genus- and species-specific molecular diagnostic protocols; 3) Conclude development of idTools online reference for cereal and grass downy mildew pathogens; and 4) Design, deliver, and report outcomes of hands-on cereal and grass downy mildew pathogen diagnosis and handling workshop.

In this project, ARS will establish resources for identification and biological characterization of GDMs. The following approach will be implemented: 1) Receive reference materials from collaborators and establish and maintain on preferred host material inside containment, for use in confirming diagnostic protocols; 2) Validate molecular detection methods developed by Cooperators; 3) Finalize, deploy, and update digital resource consolidating current knowledge of grass downy mildew pathogens; 4) Enable APHIS personnel and National Plant Diagnostic Network (NPDN) diagnosticians to understand corn downy mildew pathogen etiology and online tools through a hands-on workshop at the USDA-ARS, Foreign Disease Weed Science Research Unit.