Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Chemical trickery explored to help contain potato pest

Date:
March 18, 2013
Source:
United States Department of Agriculture - Research, Education and Economics
Summary:
If left unchecked, the pale cyst nematode burrows into potato roots to feed, obstructing nutrients and causing stunted growth, wilted leaves and other symptoms that can eventually kill the plant. Now scientists are evaluating new ways to control the pest using naturally occurring chemicals called egg-hatching factors.

Microscope image of a juvenile pale cyst nematode (right) emerging from an egg.
Credit: Photo by Potato Cyst Nematode Research Group/ARS/APHIS.

The pale cyst nematode, Globodera pallida, is one bad roundworm.

Unchecked, the pest burrows into potato roots to feed, obstructing nutrients and causing stunted growth, wilted leaves and other symptoms that can eventually kill the plant. Severe infestations can cause tuber yield losses of up to 80 percent.

Now, however, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and cooperating scientists are evaluating new ways to control G. pallida using naturally occurring chemicals called egg-hatching factors.

According to lead scientist Roy Navarre, with USDA's Agricultural Research Service (ARS), the egg-hatching factors are actually chemicals exuded from the roots of potato and certain other solanaceous plants into surrounding soil. There, the chemicals stimulate G. pallida eggs to hatch.

Normally, this helps ensure the survival of emerging juvenile nematodes. But Navarre's approach calls for using the chemicals to "trick" the eggs into hatching when no potato plants are present, leaving juveniles without food or a host on which to reproduce.

His investigations are part a broader, multi-pronged control effort involving researchers from state universities, other ARS labs, and other federal and state agriculture departments.

G. pallida, a non-native species from Europe, was first detected in eastern Idaho in April 2006. To date, it's been found in and confined to 17 infested fields representing 1,916 total acres in Idaho's Bingham and Bonneville counties. Despite G. pallida's limited geographic distribution, its presence in U.S. soils has had far-reaching impact: closed or limited export markets, devalued farmland, regulatory restrictions and other economic hardships.

Fumigation is a key defense. However, the eggs are encased in cysts that can resist fumigation, according to Navarre, who works at the ARS Vegetable and Forage Crops Research Laboratory in Prosser, Wash.

He is exploring two approaches to force the eggs to hatch in the absence of a host: amending the soil with purified forms of egg-hatching factors, and planting sticky nightshade as a "trap crop" whose roots exude the chemicals, but don't support the nematode's reproduction.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by United States Department of Agriculture - Research, Education and Economics. The original article was written by Jan Suszkiw. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

United States Department of Agriculture - Research, Education and Economics. "Chemical trickery explored to help contain potato pest." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 18 March 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130318132823.htm>.
United States Department of Agriculture - Research, Education and Economics. (2013, March 18). Chemical trickery explored to help contain potato pest. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130318132823.htm
United States Department of Agriculture - Research, Education and Economics. "Chemical trickery explored to help contain potato pest." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130318132823.htm (accessed September 22, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Monday, September 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Cat Lovers Flock to Los Angeles

Cat Lovers Flock to Los Angeles

AFP (Sep. 22, 2014) The best funny internet cat videos are honoured at LA's Feline Film Festival. Duration: 00:56 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Washed-Up 'Alien Hairballs' Are Actually Algae

Washed-Up 'Alien Hairballs' Are Actually Algae

Newsy (Sep. 22, 2014) Green balls of algae washed up on Sydney, Australia's Dee Why Beach. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: San Diego Zoo Welcomes Cheetah Cubs

Raw: San Diego Zoo Welcomes Cheetah Cubs

AP (Sep. 20, 2014) The San Diego Zoo has welcomed two Cheetah cubs to its Safari Park. The nearly three-week-old female cubs are being hand fed and are receiving around the clock care. (Sept. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Chocolate Museum Opens in Brussels

Chocolate Museum Opens in Brussels

AFP (Sep. 19, 2014) Considered a "national heritage" in Belgium, chocolate now has a new museum in Brussels. In a former chocolate factory, visitors to the permanent exhibition spaces, workshops and tastings can discover derivatives of the cocoa bean. Duration: 01:00 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins