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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Corvallis, Oregon » Horticultural Crops Production and Genetic Improvement Research Unit » Research » Research Project #444952

Research Project: Investigating Native Populations of Biocontrol Agents from PNW Vineyards towards Developing Region Specific Biocontrol for Grapevine Diseases

Location: Horticultural Crops Production and Genetic Improvement Research Unit

Project Number: 2072-21000-055-041-G
Project Type: Grant

Start Date: May 1, 2023
End Date: Oct 31, 2024

1. Collect the natural populations of biocontrol agents (BCAs) and understand their population as affected by regions 2. Test the unique populations of BCAs against major trunk disease pathogens (GTDs), botrytis, and powdery mildew under controlled environment 3. Efficacy of identified BCAs under field conditions

Objective 1 - Sample and isolates collection: We propose to collect samples from ten vineyards each in OR, WA, and ID. In our previous studies we witnessed that the pruning wounds and pruning debris were the most suitable sites colonized by microorganisms. The sap flow in the pruning wounds and soil moisture in the pruning debris provide suitable moisture conditions for microorganisms’ survival and colonization. Phylogenetic study: From the isolated populations of possible BCAs, DNA will be extracted and the sequences of housekeeping genes will be amplified using respective primer pairs for individual genus. Objective 2 - In vitro sensitivity assays : The representative isolates of native BCAs selected from objective one will be tested in plate assays for their inhibitory effect against major fungal diseases such as Botryosphaeria and Eutypa die back, Esca, Blackfoot, and Botrytis bunch rot. Briefly, a known concentration of BCAs will be added to one side of the PDA plate that will be challenged on the opposite side of the same plate by a pathogenic fungus. In vivo assays: The same isolates of native BCAs used for in vitro assays will be tested on one year old canes in University of Idaho, Parma Research and Extension Center growth chambers. The canes will be treated with known concentrations of BCAs and incubated in growth chambers at different temperature regimes. Objective 3 - Information generated from objectives 1) and 2) will be applied under field conditions in Idaho and Oregon. Depending on the temperature sensitivity of isolated BCAs and their efficacy under controlled environment conditions against various diseases, they will be selected for field trials.