AEROBIOLOGY MODELING OF THE WHEAT RUST PATHOGEN UG99 (TKKS): ASSESSING PATHWAYS, TIMING INCURSION AND SUPPORTING SURVEILLANCE

  • Isard, Scott Alan (PI)
  • Russo, Joseph M. (CoPI)

Project: Research project

Project Details

Description

A new variant of stem rust of wheat (Ug99 or TTKS) may enter the U.S. at anytime in the next few years. The pathogen has recently spread from central Africa into Yemen. Infected wheat plants release 100s of trillions of rust spores per acre each day that can be blown long distances and spread the disease. The U.S. grows approximately 60 million acres of wheat, yielding 2 billion bushels valued at $7.5 billion in 2006. Most commercial cultivars are highly susceptible to this new pathogen. If this new variant of stem rust causes a 5% loss in our major wheat production areas as other variants of the pathogen have done many times during the 20th century, this would have an important impact on U.S. agriculture. Rust pathogens have been transport to North America by airflows multiple times in the past. Our team has experience studying rusts and other aerobiology systems. In 2003, we conducted the aerobiolgical analysis of the risk of a U.S. invasion by soybean rust that was the basis for an USDA Economic Research Service report on the potential cost of a U.S. soybean rust incursion. We have also deployed aerobiological models as part of the ipmPIPE over the past three years to forecast the seasonal movements of the soybean rust within North America. Our goal is to integrate the extensive knowledge-base on wheat stem rust aerobiology and our state-of-the-art aerobiology model within a modern cyberinfrastructure. We will construct a risk analysis of aerial pathways and timing of TTKS incursions from potential off-shore source regions into U.S. wheat production areas. We will also support the expanding efforts of Extension pathologists to survey for rusts in U.S. wheat production regions.

StatusFinished
Effective start/end date10/1/129/30/14

Funding

  • National Institute of Food and Agriculture: $90,000.00

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