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R253 Real Time Predictive Disease Diagnostics

Publication Date: 
16 August 2011
Author/Contact :
Alison Lees

Contractor :

Full Research Project Title: Improving decision making for the management of potato diseases using real-time predictive diagnostics
Duration: April 2004 - March 2008

Aim: To provide information which would allow DNA-based diagnostic tests to be used for disease risk assessment.  

The project involved collaboration between researchers at FERA (formerly CSL), James Hutton Institute (formerly SCRI), SAC and industry partners. It aimed to develop diagnostic technology for disease management and decision making purposes.

It focussed on Erwinia on seed tubers and Rhizoctonia, black dot, powdery scab and PMTV in field soils. It combined work on real-time PCR assays with the development of seed and soil sampling strategies.

Techniques for the extraction of pathogen DNA from soil were developed and used in conjunction with the assays.  Information on inoculum levels on seed and daughter tubers, as well as in soil was collected. Disease in daughter crops was also assessed and all the information was used to look for relationships between seed/soil inoculum and disease, with the aim of developing  risk thresholds.This has been achieved for black dot- see project R249.

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