The 2019 Potato Wart Disease workshop: shared needs and future research directions


van de Vossenberg, B.T.L.H., van der Lee, T.A.J., Nguyen, H.D.T. (2020). The 2019 Potato Wart Disease workshop: shared needs and future research directions. EPPO Bulletin, [online] 50(1), 170-176.

Résumé en langage clair

Potato wart is a quarantine pathogen of concern for Canada. Its existence, handling and methods of control/detection is relevant for potato growers in Prince Edward Island, where the pathogen is present and threatens the island’s main economy. This report summarizes current research, discussions, and future directions arisen from the 2019 Potato Wart Disease workshop held in Wageningen, The Netherlands, where international experts gathered in forum. Staying on top of the latest research in potato wart helps Canadians, especially those in PEI, perhaps find better ways to deal with the constant risk of outbreaks they experience.


Potato wart disease is caused by the fungus Synchytrium endobioticum. A workshop on this disease was held in June 2019 at the Dutch National Plant Protection Organization (NPPO-NL) in Wageningen, the Netherlands. Over 60 participants from 20 countries and 36 organizations came together to share their knowledge via presentations and posters, to strengthen professional networks, and to identify shared needs and future directions for S. endobioticum research. The three major topics of the workshop were disease occurrence and management, understanding the pathogen, and host breeding and resistance. Many aspects of this disease were discussed and summarized in a shared statement. Future directions identified were (1) research initiatives are currently being initiated to develop standardized molecular viability tests and a molecular pathotyping test, (2) coordination is needed to come up with better standardization of the pathotyping bioassays and the set of differential cultivars described in EPPO PM 7/28 needs to be better available for testing, and (3) stacking of resistance genes is strongly recommended but resistance breeding alone is not enough and should be combined with other management strategies to contain potato wart disease. Furthermore, the attendees remarked that organizing a workshop every 2 or 3 years would be of great benefit to the potato wart disease research community.

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