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index by sub-area 5.1.1. Sustainable agriculture/Plant Systems
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Risks associated with Tilletia indica, the newly-listed EU quarantine pathogen, the cause of Karnal bunt in wheat

Contract nr: QLK5-CT-1999-01554
Project type: RS (Research and Technological Development Project)
Starting date: 01-02-2000
Duration: 48 months
Total cost: 2,336,001 EUR
EC Contribution: 1,312,000 EUR
Scientific Officer: Richard HARDWICK
Research topic: 5.1.1. Sustainable agriculture/Plant Systems

Abstract:
This project will determine the risks posed to EU wheat by the fungal plant pathogen, Tilletia indica, the cause of Karnal bunt in wheat. T .indica has not been recorded in Europe but has been intercepted on wheat imports. Legislation to protect EU wheat was enforced by the EC in 1997 based on a theoretical pest risk analysis (PRA) which concluded that the pathogen had the potential to establish in Europe and cause reductions in wheat quality, yield and to damage export markets. International debate has questioned the justification for legislation, implying such policies are trade-restrictive. Research will be undertaken to develop a more accurate PRA for T. indica. Crop and pathogen modelling and geographical information systems will determine areas at risk. A socio-economic model will determine the risks this and related pathogens pose. A PRA based on scientific experimentation will be produced which can be used internationally by policy-makers to re-evaluate legislation for T. indica. A risk management plan will be developed for Europe. The international PRA process will be developed for plant pathogens.

Objectives:
1. To accurately predict the risk of Tilletia indica becoming established in Europe by combining crop and pathogen models and to use these alongside new pathogen data in pest risk mapping and pest risk analysis to support and underpin EU plant health policy and legislation on T. indica.
2. To determine the susceptibility of European wheat cultivars to T. indica and to estimate potential losses of yield of these cultivars if T. indica reaches Europe.
3. To determine the survival of T. indica teliospores under a range of European soil conditions.
4. To determine the abiotic factors that affect dormancy and germination of T. indica teliospores using controlled environments, relating the results to European climatic conditions and European wheat crop phenology.
5. To accurately predict the likely socio-economic impact of T. indica should it be introduced into Europe.
6. To analyse the risk of entry, establishment and socio-economic losses for the EU and to develop harmonised risk-management strategies and contingency plans to deal with actual introductions of T. indica to Europe, especially aspects of eradication, containment and control, whilst minimising disruption to free trade.
7. To generalise the specific findings of the project so as to develop risk analysis techniques for other plant pathogens of potential threat to the EU, supporting EU and international plant health policy and legislation.
8. To disseminate project outputs on (a) The risks to the EU from Tilletia indica and (b) Advances in pest risk analysis for plant pathogens.This will specifically be achieved through an internet website established for the project and by holding a workshop at the end of the project for representatives from EU Member States, accession countries and other interested parties (including representatives from national and/or international plant health organisations).


Coordinator
C. SANSFORD
Central Science Laboratory
York
UNITED KINGDOM
Tel.: +44 1904 462225
Fax: +44 1904 462250
E-mail: c.sansford@csl.gov.uk


Partners
  A. PORTA-PUGLIA
Istituto Sperimentale per la Patologia Vegetale
Rome
ITALY
Tel.: +39 068270355
Fax: +39 0686802296
E-mail: research@ispave.rm.it
  J. PORTER
The Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University
Taastrup
DENMARK
Tel.: +45 35 28 35 60
Fax: +45 35 28 21 75
E-mail: jrp@kvl.dk
  F. MIGLIETTA
Istituto di Agrometeorologia ed Analisi Ambientale Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche
Firenze
ITALY
Tel.: +39 055301422
Fax: +39 055308910
E-mail: migliet@sunserver.iata.fi.cn.ir
  G. MURRAY
Wagga Wagga Agricultural Institute Private BAG
Wagga Wagga
AUSTRALIA
Tel.: +61 2 6938 1879
Fax: +61 2 6938 1822
E-mail: gordon.murray@agric.nsw.gov.au
  G. PETERSON
USDA Ars Foreign Disease-Weed Science Research Unit
Maryland
UNITED STATES
Tel.: +301 619 7313
Fax: +301 619 2880
E-mail: peterson@ncifcrf.gov
  V. LETH
The Danish Government Institute of Seed Pathology for Developing Countries
Copenhagen
DENMARK
Tel.: +45 35 28 37 23
Fax: +45 35 28 37 01
E-mail: vib@kvl.dk
  H. MAGNUS
NCRI Plant Protection Centre
Aas
NORWAY
Tel.: +47 64949273
Fax: +47 64949226
E-mail: haakon.magnus@planteforsk.no
  P. KELLY
Rural Economy Research Centre
Dublin
IRELAND
Tel.: +353 1 6688188
Fax: +353 1 6688443
E-mail: pkelly@hq.teagasc.ie