Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

A Better Test for a Potato Pest

24.08.2011
A U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientist has created a new weapon in the war being waged against the potato cyst nematode-a diagnostic test that identifies the type of nematode infesting a grower's field.

Xiaohong Wang, a molecular biologist with the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) Robert W. Holley Center for Agriculture and Health in Ithaca, N.Y., has filed a patent application on the monitoring tool, developed in part by cloning and sequencing key genes. ARS is USDA's principal intramural scientific research agency. This research supports the USDA priorities of ensuring food safety and promoting international food security.

There are two types of potato cyst nematode (PCN), the golden nematode and the pale cyst nematode. Being able to tell one from the other is important because breeders have developed potatoes that can resist the golden nematode, but have yet to develop varieties that resist the pale cyst nematode. If the pale cyst nematode is found in a field, potatoes cannot be grown there.

The golden nematode (Globodera rostochiensis) has been a problem in New York State since 1941 and has been found in Canada. The pale cyst nematode (G. pallida) was discovered in Idaho in 2006 and remains a major threat in Europe. Potatoes and seed potatoes are freely exchanged across international boundaries, so monitoring potato growing regions is essential.

Traditional methods of distinguishing between the two PCN species have relied on time-consuming morphological analyses and PCR (polymerase chain reaction) assays. They also require relatively large samples of nematode cysts. But Wang and her colleagues cloned the parasitism gene the nematodes use to produce a protein that plays an important role in the infection process, known as chorismate mutase.

The researchers then sequenced those chorismate mutase genes, compared the sequences, and identified unique regions in each sequence. They then developed a probe capable of recognizing the unique regions in each nematode's DNA. Wang described the process in a paper in the European Journal of Plant Pathology.

The diagnostic test is one of several new technologies designed to distinguish PCN types from each other, but it is a thousand times more sensitive than other systems and is expected to be widely used in regulatory and quarantine programs because it can give reliable results from tiny amounts of nematode material.

Read more about this research in the August 2011 issue of Agricultural Research magazine.

Dennis O'Brien | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.ars.usda.gov

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Fighting a destructive crop disease with mathematics
21.06.2017 | University of Cambridge

nachricht Unusual soybean coloration sheds a light on gene silencing
20.06.2017 | University of Illinois College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Quantum thermometer or optical refrigerator?

23.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

A 100-year-old physics problem has been solved at EPFL

23.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Equipping form with function

23.06.2017 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>