Mole Valley Farmers
Farminguk
27 August 2016 | Online since 2003
Scrutton Bland


7 July 2014 10:40:43 |

International collobration aims to protect world's crops


Experts from the UK and India are working together to identify and develop novel environmentally-sustainable strategies to control plant pests, known as plant-parasitic nematodes or eelworms, to ensure global food production and security. This project is funded by the UK-India Education and Research Initiative (UKIERI).
Plant-parasitic nematodes are thought to cause annual losses to crops in the region of $77 - $100 billion globally. They are an important constraint on crop production by reducing the effective uptake of water and nutrients by the plant’s root system. Since the middle of the twentieth century, these crop pests have been controlled through the use of synthetic pesticides. But these are some of the most environmentally toxic compounds used in agriculture, and legislation prohibits their use in many parts of the world including Europe and USA. Hence, less environmentally harmful methods of control are required.
Dr Keith Davies, senior lecturer in applied nematology at the University of Hertfordshire, said: “Both India and the UK have a problem with potato cyst nematodes which has a serious impact on the potato crops each year. This project is to develop natural solutions to control these pests on this important staple crop.
Dr Keith Davies from University of Hertfordshire (right) and Dr Sharad Mohan from Indian Agricultural Research Insitute (left)

Dr Keith Davies from University of Hertfordshire (right) and Dr Sharad Mohan from Indian Agricultural Research Insitute (left)

“We need natural control methods which do not have the detrimental effect on the environment that the synthetic pesticides have. India also has serious nematode problems on other major crops including rice, wheat and pigeon pea – so the project will also look at natural solutions to control these crop pests.”
This new collaboration brings together expertise in this area of crop protection and food security from the University of Hertfordshire, the Indian Agricultural Research Institute and Rothamsted Research.
The research team will be investigating the use of a bacterium from the Pasteuria group which produces spores and is a parasite of several invertebrate animals which live within soil. The spores lie dormant in the soil and adhere to and then infect the nematodes as they make their way towards the plant roots.
Dr Davies continued: “We know from previous research that when infected, the nematode’s ability to reproduce is affected and, in some species of pest nematode, they are prohibited from reproducing. This effect on nematodes has been associated with nematode suppressive soils.”
The project aims to understand how Pasteuria penetrans bacterial parasites attach themselves to the nematode’s outer skin known as its cuticle. By investigating these molecular interactions between plant-parasitic nematodes and the group of nematode parasitic bacteria, the research team aims to exploit this knowledge and develop a natural and sustainable biological control agent for plant-parasitic nematodes.
The two year UKIERI-funded project ‘Understanding Pasteuria spore attachment for exploitation as a natural control agent of root-knot and cyst nematode crop pests’ involves a total of fifteen exchange visits between scientists in India and the UK to build substantial capacity in the area of nematology, molecular biology and crop protection.

Download

0 Comment

loginuserlogo
Name

Please enter your name


Email

Please enter your email

Please enter valid email


Comment

Please enter your comment


Post Comment

Your comment has been submitted successfully. Please wait for admin approval.


Comments

No comments posted yet. Be the first to post a comment


Canada | 26 August 2016
Canadian beef exports to EU in limbo over E. coli dispute

If differences of opinion over food safety practices are not resolved, the big promises of a new European market for Canadian beef may be a pipe dream. The Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreemen...


India | 26 August 2016
GM mustard clears hurdle in India but more remain

A government panel has cleared commercial use of what would be India's first genetically modified (GM) food crop, but politicians still have to give final approvals amid wide-spread public opposition....


USA | 26 August 2016
USDA buys $20 million in cheese from dairy farms

Moving to bolster dairy farmers who are struggling to cope with price declines, the Agriculture Department announced Tuesday it is spending $20 million - on 11 million pounds of cheese. A taxpayer ...


France | 26 August 2016
Lactalis talks with French milk producers end with no deal

A meeting between Europe's largest dairy group Lactalis and French milk producers requesting a rise in prices ended in a deadlock after 10 hours of negotiations, sources close to the talks said. ...


USA | 26 August 2016
California farmers turn to sewers for water

California's prolonged drought is forcing Central Valley farmers to scramble for water to irrigate crops. They have to be creative. One agency is even turning to a sewage plant to meet demand. Just...



Trending Now

Viewed
Discussed


Top stories you may have missed
FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

The British public are overwhelmingly in favour of keeping or strengthening...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

The sustained recovery of pig prices since the spring has come at a time wh...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

A World Trade Organisation (WTO) panel has declared the Russian import ban ...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

A new study has linked oilseed rape crops grown from neonicotinoid-treated ...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

Philip Hammond is to guarantee billions of pounds of UK government investme...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

Access to the foreign labour market is 'critical', according the chief exec...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

The Tenant Farmers Association has said the National Trust's vision for a p...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

Ulster farmers will 'not lie down and wave the white flag' when Brexit nego...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

The cost of rural crime to the UK economy costs £42.5 million a year, accor...


FarmingUK
FarmingUK Logo

FarmingUK

A young farmers club member from Oxfordshire has created a petition on the ...


closeicon
Username
Password