TMMF Ltd
Farminguk
25 June 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


Name

Please enter your name


Email

Comment

Please enter your comment


Post Comment

Your comment submitted successfully.Please wait for admin approval.


Comments

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


Netherlands | 24 June 2016
Dutch crops grown on 'Mars' soil found safe to eat

Dutch scientists said Thursday crops of four vegetables and cereals grown on soil similar to that on Mars have been found safe to eat, amid plans for the first manned mission to the planet. Abundan...


Canada | 24 June 2016
Canadian farmers' percentage equity increase

Equity in Canada’s farm sector was up almost 6 per cent at the end of last year from the year before. However, Statistics Canada points out that’s the smallest percentage increase since 2009. Th...


France | 24 June 2016
Inside Europe: Is China changing the face of rural France?

In France, farms have often been in the same families for generations. But that's begun to change for agricultural communities in Berry, a cereal growing region in the center of the country. C...


Australia | 24 June 2016
Drought forces Queensland cattle to head to South Australia

The ongoing drought in Queensland is forcing graziers to send their cattle nearly 2,000 kilometres away from home on agistment. The Walker family from Cumberland station, near Barcaldine in central...


Congo | 24 June 2016
A potential agricultural powerhouse for Africa

The Democratic Republic of the Congo is the second largest country in Africa, after Algeria, but unlike the arid north African state, the DRC is endowed by nature with forest that covers two-thirds of...



Trending Now

Viewed
Discussed

Farms and Land for sale

PropertyLocation
PropertyAgent
PropertyMinimumPrice
PropertyMaximumPrice
PropertyCategory

Holiday Rentals search

AccommodationKeyword
AccommodationType
AccommodationCounty
AccommodationStarRating


Top stories you may have missed
closeicon
Username
Password