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POnTE: epidemiology and integrated management of different bacterial pest organisms [H2020]

Towards diagnostic, monitoring and management tools for pathogenic agents transmitted by emergent insect vectors  in Europe.

. © INRA
Updated on 06/10/2016
Published on 03/10/2016

Xylella fastidiosa, a bacterium that was previously limited to the Americas, has just emerged in Asia and Europe. This bacterium is thus causing a real socio-economic disaster in Europe, where the Puglia olive groves are a central feature.  This bacterium, in the same way as Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum, Phytophthora spp. and Hymenoscyphus pseudoalbidus, is an invasive pathogenic agent transmitted by insect vectors .
The PonTE project (Pest Organisms Threatening Europe), funded by the H2020 SFS-03a-2014 programme on native and alien pests in agriculture and forestry, aims to propose integrated and sustainable control strategies against these four pathogenic agents which are threatening a variety of crops and natural environments in Europe.
With respect to Xylella fastidiosa, the partners in this projects are seeking to:

  • clarify the role of this bacterium and other agents (fungi and insects) in the aetiology of olive quick decline syndrome,
  • improve knowledge of the strains present in Italy and France and the diversity of their insect vectors, and clarify the evolutionary mechanisms and particularly the ability for recombination of the bacterium,
  • develop new tools and procedures for epidemiological surveillance,
  • test different control systems targeting insects, the environment of plots and bacterial survival.

INRA's Research Institute for Horticulture and Seeds (UMR IRHS) is involved in studying the diversity of Xylella fastidiosa and the development of tools to monitor crops and prevent the disease.
Partners: the project is being coordinated by Donato Boscia at the CNR (Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche) in Bari, Italy, and involves 25 participants from Europe, Costa Rica and Israel.

Scientific contact(s):