Dr. Antonet Svircev

Image Antonet Maria Svircev
Research Scientist
  • Development and implementation of novel bacteriophage-mediated biopesticide for control of plant pathogens.
  • Bacteriophage resistance mechanisms: role of exopolysaccharides, lysogeny, CRISPRs and molecular based studies on phage host range and bacterial host infection
  • Integrated biological control, host-parasite relations, induced plant resistance, pathogen epidemiology, traditional and molecular detection of tree fruit pathogens.

Current research and/or projects

  • Control of fire blight using a dual action high efficacy phage-carrier mediated biological
  • Bacteriophage resistance mechanisms
  • Identification and characterization of the causal agent(s) of fruit tree decline in Canada

Research and/or project statements

  • Development and implementation of integrated pest management program (IPM) for control of fire blight for Canadian apple and pear industry.
  • The development of a novel high efficacy phage-mediated biopesticide that can be easily incorporated into orchard IPM programs.
  • Examine/study the impact of the phage biopesticide on the streptomycin sensitive/ resistant wild type populations in the orchard.
  • Formulation of the phage-carrier biopesticide and field based efficacy trials.

Education and awards

BSc (Hons.), Microbiology and Immunology, University of Western Ontario, 1979

PhD Plant Sciences, University of Western Ontario, 1984

NSERC Post Doctoral Fellowship 1985

Key publications

  1. Villanueva, O., Svircev, A., Castle, A., Zhang, J., Ellouze W. 2023 Optimizing field based control of Phytophthora capsici: Use of multiplex droplet digital PCR to quantify biological and pathogen populations. Oral presentation at the 12th International congress of Plant Pathology (ICPP-2023), August 20-25, Lyon, France.

    2023 - View publication details

  2. Villanueva, O., Svircev, A.M., Castle, A.J., Zhang J., Ellouze, W. 2023. Incorporating Foretryx® in the integrated management of Phytophthora capsici in horticultural crops. The Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Convention, February 22-23. Held at Niagara Falls Convention Centre, Ontario, Canada.

    2023 - View publication details

  3. Villanueva, O., Ilyukhin, E., Svircev, A.M., Castle, A.J., Ellouze, W. (2022) Comparative genomic analysis reveals genetic variation in the pathogenicity-related genes of Canadian Phytophthora capsici isolates. The 3rd Annual CanFunNet Fungal Biology Conference, June 1-3. Held virtually at University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada. p. 88.

    2022 - View publication details

  4. Villanueva O, McCollPoon E, Svircev AM, Castle AJ, Ellouze W (2021) Pathogenicity and virulence of a Canadian isolate of Phytophthora capsici on pepper. The Joint Canadian Fungal Research Network (CanFunNet) and Great Lakes Mycology Conference 2021/05/26 - 2021/05/28, Western University London, Ontario, Canada, p 110

    2021 - View publication details

  5. Ellouze, W., Nesbitt, D., Parcey, M., Gayder, S., Marchand, G., Svircev, A.M., Tambong, J.T. (2020). Draft Genome Sequences of Hazelnut-Associated Pseudomonas Strains Isolated in Ontario, Canada, 9(45), http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/MRA.01021-20

    2020 - View publication details

  6. Parcey, M., Gayder, S., Morley-Senkler, V., Bakkeren, G., Úrbez-Torres, J.R., Ali, S., Castle, A.J., Svircev, A.M. (2020). Comparative genomic analysis of Erwinia amylovora reveals novel insights in phylogenetic arrangement, plasmid diversity, and streptomycin resistance. Genomics, [online] 112(5), 3762-3772. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ygeno.2020.04.001

    2020 - View publication details

  7. Gayder, S., Parcey, M., Nesbitt, D., Castle, A.J., Svircev, A.M. (2020). Population dynamics between erwinia amylovora, pantoea agglomerans and bacteriophages: Exploiting synergy and competition to improve phage cocktail efficacy. Microorganisms, [online] 8(9), 1-18. http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms8091449

    2020 - View publication details

  8. Parcey, M., Gayder, S., Castle, A.J., Svircev, A.M. (2020). Molecular profile of phage infection: A novel approach for the characterization of Erwinia phages through qPCR. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, [online] 21(2), http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijms21020553

    2020 - View publication details

  9. Parcey, M., Gayder, S., Castle, A.J., Svircev, A.M. (2019) Study of Erwinia phage-host interactions through quantitative real-time PCR. J Plant Pathol. 101: 849-83

    2019 - View publication details

  10. S. Gayder, A.J. Castle, A.M. Svircev. (2019). Phage-mediated biocontrol of Erwinia amylovora: screening for the ideal carrier. J Plant Pathol. 101: 849-83

    2019 - View publication details

  11. Gayder, S., Parcey, M., Castle, A.J., Svircev, A.M. (2019). Host range of bacteriophages against a world-wide collection of erwinia amylovora determined using a quantitative PCR assay. Viruses, [online] 11(10), http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/v11100910

    2019 - View publication details

  12. Svircev, A.M. and Castle, A.J. 2019. Fire blight control: Innovation from science to field applications, Biocontrol 2019, July 9-11, Viterbo, IT https://www.biocontrol2019.com/keynote-speakers.html

    Keynote address

    2019 - View publication details

  13. Svircev, A.M., Anany , H., Wang, Q. and Castle, A.J. Successful control of fire blight: Can bacteriophages do the job? Fourth International Symposium on Biological Control of Bacterial Plant Diseases, Biocontrol 2019, July 9-11, Viterbo, IT , FAO pp 34-38 http://www.fao.org/3/ca5311en/ca5311en.pdf

    2019 - View publication details

  14. Laforest, M., Bisaillon, K., Ciotola, M., Cadieux, M., Hébert, P.O., Toussaint, V., Svircev, A.M. (2019). Rapid identification of erwinia amylovora and pseudomonas syringae species and characterization of E. Amylovora streptomycin resistance using quantitative PCR assays. Canadian Journal of Microbiology, [online] 65(7), 496-509. http://dx.doi.org/10.1139/cjm-2018-0587

    2019 - View publication details

  15. McFadden-Smith, W., Grigg-McGuffin, K, Green, A. and Svircev, A.M. 2017. Fire blight management in Ontario apple and pears. Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Convention 2017, February 22-23, 2017, Niagara Falls, ON.

    2018 - View publication details

  16. Gayder, S., Castle, A. and Svircev, A. (2017). Erwinia amylovora global phage-host range study using a standardized qPCR based method. FEMS, Valencia, Spain July 9-13, 2017.

    2017 - View publication details

  17. Svircev, A.M. and Castle, A.J. (2017). Bacteriophages in agriculture: overview of a program to develop a high efficacy biopesticide for control of Erwinia amylovora. FEMS, Valencia, Spain July 9-13, 2017.

    2017 - View publication details

  18. Svircev, A.M. (2017). Fire blight management: knowledge based decisions and solutions. Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Convention 2017, February 22-23, 2017, Niagara Falls, ON.

    2017 - View publication details

  19. Svircev, A.M. 2016. Management of fire blight in pears: Solutions and challenges, Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Convention, Feb. 18, 2016, Niagara Falls.

    2016 - View publication details

  20. Svircev, A., Stockwell, V., Vanneste, J. and Johnson, K. (2016) Advances in biological control of fire blight: Are we there yet?, 3rd International Symposium on Biological Control of Plant Diseases, April 11-13, 2016 Belgrade, Serbia

    2016 - View publication details

Research facility

1391 Sandford Street
London, ON N5V 4T3


  • Adjunct Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, Brock University