The pathogen causing soybean rust, Phakopsora pachyrhizi, was first described in Japan in 1902. The disease was important in the Eastern Hemisphere for many decades before the fungus was reported in Hawaii in 1994, which was followed by reports from countries in Africa and South America. In 2004, P. pachyrhizi was confirmed in Louisiana, making it the first report in the continental United States. Based on yield losses from countries in Asia, Africa, and South America, it was clear that this pathogen could have a major economic impact on the yield of 30 million ha of soybean in the United States. The response by agencies within the United States Department of Agriculture, industry, soybean check-off boards, and universities was immediate and complex. The impacts of some of these activities are detailed in this review. The net result has been that the once dreaded disease, which caused substantial losses in other parts of the world, is now better understood and effectively managed in the United States. The disease continues to be monitored yearly for changes in spatial and temporal distribution so that soybean growers can continue to benefit by knowing where soybean rust is occurring during the growing season.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Agronomy and Crop Science
- Plant Science