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New research to decode the genetic secrets of prolific potato pest
Date:11/27/2007

ots nearby. Because of this, once a field is infected, its almost impossible to get rid of them.

G. pallida is an international problem, affecting the worlds two major potato growing regions the Ukraine and Idaho, USA as well as 18 countries in the EU and 55 countries world wide. The widespread cultivation of potato varieties such as Maris Piper, which whilst naturally resistant to other PCNs, are not resistant to G. pallida, suggests that the significance of the worm is likely to increase.

UK farmers spend in excess of 50 million a year in efforts to manage the pest. Infestations are currently treated with toxic chemicals, which do not enter the food chain, but are expensive to apply and can make soil sterile, killing other living organisms within it.

Dr Urwin says that controlling G. pallida is essential to maintain the competitiveness of UK potato industry, which together with processing and retail markets is worth some 3 billion per year (1). We think that consumers are more likely to support UK production that avoids pesticide residues and environmental harm and that is soundly based on a sustainable approach, he says.

The team hope to complete the sequencing by 2012.


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Contact: Jo Kelly
jokelly@campuspr.co.uk
44-113-258-9880
University of Leeds  
Source:Eurekalert

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