Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

FP7

MYCORRAY — Result In Brief

Project ID: 315166
Funded under: FP7-SME
Country: Spain
Domain: Health

Early warning for vineyards

An EU team has developed simple and portable tools for identifying vineyard fungal pathogens. The technology relies on rapid DNA assaying of soilborne disease organisms.
Early warning for vineyards
Europe is the world's largest producer of wine and vine nursery products, but the industry is under threat from various fungal diseases. The number of organisms involved makes management very complex, difficult and expensive, and – for now – ultimately ineffective.

The EU-funded MYCORRAY (A microarray tool for effective control of fungal grapevine trunk diseases in European vineyards) project set about developing an assay tool for identifying soil fungal species. Although not a treatment, the tool allows simultaneous, cost-effective DNA identification of the 13 known fungal species involved in grapevine trunk diseases.

MYCORRAY's main outcome was development of a disposable array tube containing a DNA microarray chip. Researchers combined the tube with an inexpensive stand-alone array reader, based on the Android operating system and usable by non-specialists. The reader captures and processes the microarray images for the presence of pathogens, and then reports the results to the user.

The microarray chip has been designed to detect 12 of the most important fungal species involved in grapevine trunk disease. In addition, the array can be used to detect the presence of the bacterium Agrobacterium vitis and distinguish between different strains.

Researchers validated the system at laboratory scales, using cultures to determine the limits of detection for each pathogen, and then in field trials. The team took samples from naturally infected vineyards, comparing results against three detection methods.

Results demonstrated that the system was able to reliably and simultaneously detect 13 pathogens. Scanner information was presented in an easy-to-interpret fashion. Thus, the system was confirmed fit for its intended use.

The MYCORRAY system offers a reliable and cost-effective diagnostic system for fungal infection of Europe's vineyards. Hence, the industry will be better equipped to reduce or manage the threat from fungal diseases.

Related information

Keywords

Vineyards, fungal diseases, MYCORRAY, microarray tool, grapevine trunk diseases
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