News and announcements from all on any aspect of Plant Pathology are invited for the
Newsletter. Contributions from the ISPP Executive, Council and Subject Matter
Committees, Associated Societies and Supporting Organisations are requested.
The call for nominations of candidates for election to the 2018-2023 ISPP
Executive Committee has been posted to all constituent societies of the ISPP.
This election occurs once every 5 years, in accordance with the ISPP Rules of
Procedure. Nominations are being sought for the positions of ISPP President,
Vice-President, Secretary-General and Treasurer.
A Nomination Committee
has been formed, consisting of highly respected plant pathologists representing
different regions of the world, and chaired by Prof M Lodovica Gullino (ISPP
Immediate Past President). The Committee will select two candidates for each
position from the nominations received. The selected candidates will go forward
to the full election, which will be a ballot of all ISPP Councilors.
Potential nominees must firstly agree to be nominated, and be aware of the time
commitments and responsibilities involved with the respective positions.
Short-listed nominees will be asked to provide a short written summary of their
background and how they might serve in the position for which they have been
nominated. Nominees should also be willing and aware of their responsibilities
to ISPP and Associated Societies in fulfilling the duties of the positions These
will include participation at the International Congresses of Plant Pathology,
in 2018 (Boston, USA) and 2023 (Lyon, France), and being able to commit 70 to
150 h per year for ISPP Executive service. Nominators and potential nominees
should view information on the ISPP (http://www.isppweb.org/about_objectives.asp
), and consider the duties and responsibilities of the Executive as outlined in
the ISPP statutes and rules of procedure:
should be sent directly to Prof M Lodovica Gullino (firstname.lastname@example.org),
or through a representative of an Associated Society (see
http://www.isppweb.org/about_associated_eng.asp). Names and full contact
details (including e-mail addresses), along with evidence of each nominee's
willingness to serve if elected, should be provided. Nominations should
be received by 31 March 2017.
Alerts for policy makers extracted from papers published during 2016 in
summarises very briefly some of the papers published in volume 8 of
for the year 2016, drawing attention to current and future critical issues in
food and nutrition insecurity and measures that could be adopted to ameliorate
them. It is perhaps worth mentioning that many are context specific, requiring
detailed information. This implies far more work on the ground - in two words,
extension officers. These should be well trained in the recognition of those
factors that are preventing the attainment of reasonable yields of crop plants
and proper development of humans: for the former, professionals should include
agronomists and plant pathologists and for the latter nutritionists. It is hoped
that Policy Makers concerned with food and nutrition security will note the
papers relevant to their particular sphere of influence and that they will be
inspired to take early action. Numbers after each entry refer to the pages on
which the papers may be found in Volume 8 of the journal.
(Richard Strange, Food Security, 2017)
Ancient Chinese riddle of travertine dam creation solved
Scientists have long wondered how the 3300 crescent-shaped travertine dams at
the Huanglong National Scenic Area in Sichuan, China had formed. While visiting
the park as a tourist, Gary Strobel, a well-known Montana State University
professor noticed fungal hyphae attached to a rhododendron leaf he picked up
from the pool. He immediately knew they had a role in the creation of the
His theory was proven by other researchers in the lab
including Jie Xie and her colleagues from Southwest University in Chongqing,
China, and Brad Geary at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, USA. When the
fungi samples were examined under an electron microscope each filament had a
crystal growing on it. When the fungi died, the crystals were left behind with a
distinct hole in each one where the filament had been attached. Eventually the
crystals fuse and build the travertine dams where the leaves pile up in the
pools, a process that may date back about 126,000 years.
hit the dam surface and the crystals begin to grow," Strobel said. "Because the
crystals grow on the hyphae, it has to be the fungi that starts the
crystallisation." Strobel co-authored a paper with Jie Xie and others on the
topic was recently published in the January edition of
GM bananas to be trialled for Fusarium TR4 resistance in Australia
Australia's Office of the Gene Technology Regulator (OGTR) has issued a license
to Queensland University of Technology, allowing the field trials of banana
genetically modified (GM) for resistance to Fusarium wilt disease. The field
trials (License Application DIR146) are allowed to take place at one site of up
to 6 hectares in Litchfield Municipality, Northern Territory, for a period of 5
years. The purpose of the field trial is to evaluate the level of disease
resistance and agronomic performance of the GM banana plants under Australian
The final Risk Assessment and Risk Management Plan
(RARMP) concludes that this limited and controlled release poses negligible
risks to people and the environment and does not require specific risk treatment
Scientists identify the real monarch of the forest: fungus
"To a casual hiker, one bit of North American forest may seem like any other.
But look more closely and a mysterious patchwork of diversity emerges. Some
stands of forest are clearly dominated by a single kind of tree. Others are a
diverse mix of species."
(Ivan Semeniuk, The Global and Mail, 12 January 2017)
How viruses hijack cell's machinery in bacteria
In a paper published in the
13 January 2017 issue of Science, researchers from the University of
California, San Diego, USA conducted a series of experiments that allowed them
to view in detail what happens inside bacterial cells as the invading
Joe Pogliano and his colleagues found that
shortly after bacteriophages infect bacteria, they destroy much of the existing
architecture of the bacterial cells, including bacterial DNA, and then hijack
the remaining cellular machinery. The viruses then reorganise the entire cell
into an efficient, centralised factory to produce the next generation of
viruses. "This factory and the surrounding arrangement of the infected cell are
remarkably similar to the organisation seen in plant and animal cells," said
The pictures showed viral offspring being assembled around
the nucleus-like compartment in the bacterium. Eventually, these new viruses
burst the cell open and spread out to infect neighbouring cells.
this be how multicellular organisms evolved? One existing theory, called "viral
eukaryogenesis," suggests that the first eukaryotic cell was created when a
large virus took over a bacterium. Eventually, the bacterium and virus formed a
compound cell, in which the virus evolved into the nucleus.
(University of California - San Diego, ScienceDaily, 12
Off-switch for CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing system discovered
Researchers from the University of California, San Francisco, USA have
discovered a way to switch off the widely used CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing system
using newly identified anti-CRISPR proteins that are produced by bacterial
viruses. The technique has the potential to improve the safety and accuracy of
CRISPR applications both in the clinic and for basic research.
study, published in Cell
on 29 December 2016, was led by Benjamin Rauch, a post-doctoral researcher in
the laboratory of Joseph Bondy-Denomy.
(Nicholas Weiler, University of California San
Francisco New Center, 29 December 2016)
Frontiers for research on the ecology of plant-pathogenic bacteria
A paper by Cindy E. Morris et al. titled " Frontiers for research on the ecology
of plant-pathogenic bacteria: fundamentals for sustainability" was published in
January 2017 by Molecular Plant Pathology. The abstract is as follows:-
Methods to ensure the health of crops owe their efficacy to the extent
to which we understand the ecology and biology of environmental microorganisms
and the conditions under which their interactions with plants lead to losses in
crop quality or yield. However, in the pursuit of this knowledge, notions of the
ecology of plant-pathogenic microorganisms have been reduced to a plant-centric
and agro-centric focus. With increasing global change, i.e. changes that
encompass not only climate, but also biodiversity, the geographical distribution
of biomes, human demographic and socio-economic adaptations and land use, new
plant health problems will emerge via a range of processes influenced by these
changes. Hence, knowledge of the ecology of plant pathogens will play an
increasingly important role in the anticipation and response to disease
emergence. Here, we present our opinion on the major challenges facing the study
of the ecology of plant-pathogenic bacteria. We argue that the discovery of
markedly novel insights into the ecology of plant-pathogenic bacteria is most
likely to happen within a framework of more extensive scales of space, time and
biotic interactions than those that currently guide much of the research on
these bacteria. This will set a context that is more propitious for the
discovery of unsuspected drivers of the survival and diversification of
plant-pathogenic bacteria and of the factors most critical for disease
emergence, and will set the foundation for new approaches to the sustainable
management of plant health. We describe the contextual background of,
justification for and specific research questions with regard to the following
Development of terminology to describe plant-bacterial relationships in
terms of bacterial fitness.
Definition of the full scope of the environments in which
plant-pathogenic bacteria reside or survive.
Delineation of pertinent phylogenetic contours of plant-pathogenic
bacteria and naming of strains independent of their presumed life style.
Assessment of how traits of plant-pathogenic bacteria evolve within the
overall framework of their life history.
Exploration of possible beneficial ecosystem services contributed to by
Molecular Plant Pathology - Editor in Chief Sought
Pathology, the internationally esteemed scientific journal co-owned by
the British Society for Plant Pathology
and Wiley publishers, is seeking an Editor in Chief. The current Editor in
Chief, Marty Dickman, is standing down at the end of his 5-year term in
December 2017.Therefore applications are invited for the post of Editor in
Chief of Molecular Plant Pathology, to commence on 1 January 2018. With a
2015 Impact Factor of 4.335, the journal publishes research and reviews on
diseases caused by fungi, oomycetes, viruses, nematodes, bacteria, insects,
parasitic plants and other organisms. The journal is dedicated to minimizing
the time between submission, review and publication and to providing a
high-quality forum for original research in molecular plant pathology.
Second Edition of Compendium of Blueberry, Cranberry, and
Lingonberry Diseases and Pests - new book
Compendium of Blueberry, Cranberry, and Lingonberry Diseases and Pests,
Second Edition. 2017. James J. Polashock, Frank L. Caruso, Anne L. Averill,
and Annemiek C. Schilder (Eds). APS Press, 231 p.
edition of the Compendium of Blueberry, Cranberry, and Lingonberry Diseases
and Pests is now available for commercial growing operations, nurseries,
advisors, university staff, and diagnosticians. This new title helps users
confidently scout, identify, and manage problems in the field before they
become economically devastating, offering more than 400 images and the
latest diagnostic and management information for nearly 150 diseases, pests,
and disorders of blueberry, cranberry, and lingonberry plants.
Compendium is organised into four major sections on:
Infectious diseases, such as anthracnose fruit rot, bacterial
canker, fairy ring, and leaf mottle virus
Non-infectious disorders like cold injury, nutritional disorders,
and oxygen deficiency
Insect pests, such as aphids, blueberry blossom weevils, cranberry
fruitworms, and leaf rollers
Blueberry certification to facilitate complicity with blueberry
plant certification standards and practices
This new edition also offers a useful glossary, plus an index of key terms
and an appendix to help readers identify common names of diseases and the
pathogens that cause them. A detailed description of this book can be found
APS Press website.
Tarped citrus trucks will fight Asian Citrus Psyllids
In the ongoing battle against Asian Citrus Psyllids (ACP), an insect that is
known to vector the fatal Huanglongbing disease in citrus, the California
Department of Food and Agriculture has issued a new regulation to require
trucks to be tarped when moving citrus.
Fruit is not considered
to be a vector of Huanglongbing since ACP can only vector the disease
through leaves and twigs. However, these pests are catching rides on trucks
all over the state on the fruit that was considered to be relatively safe.
Fruit that is being transported from Bakersfield to Fresno could be taking
these hitchhiking pests anywhere along Highway 99.
Joint 12th European Foundation for Plant Pathology (EFPP) and the 10th
French Society for Plant Pathology (SFP) conference on "Deepen knowledge in
Plant Pathology for innovative Agroecology" 29 May - 2 June, 2017
Dunkerque-Malo-les-bains, France Contact Email:
15th Congress of the Mediterranean Phytopathological Union - Plant health
sustaining Mediterranean Ecosystems 20 June - 23 June, 2017 Cordoba,
Asian Conference on Plant Pathology 2017 12 September - 15
September, 2017 Jeju Island, South Korea Website:
Science Protecting Plant Health 2017 A joint conference of the Australasian
Plant Pathology Society and the Plant Biosecurity Cooperative Research Centre
26 September - 28 September, 2017 Brisbane, Queensland, Australia