Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Joining forces against plant viruses

Stakeholders in the field of plant virology decided to coordinate research activities across Europe in order to develop more effective genetic resistant lines against plant viruses.
Joining forces against plant viruses
Climatic changes coupled to the intensification of agricultural practices have led to an increase in the incidence of virus-mediated diseases. To limit virus infection in crops, farmers have resorted to the use of pesticides. However, this approach is inefficient, harmful and affects food quality.

The focus of the EU-funded Resistvir project was to integrate research on the control of viral diseases in plants. Resistvir constituted a pan-European collaborative framework among stakeholders in plant virology that responded to pressure on developing virus-resistant lines.

It is generally believed that genetic resistance, achieved through conventional breeding or as genetically modified (GM) crops, is the most effective way to control plant pathogenic viruses and their vectors. Resistvir aimed to identify and transfer ideas currently at academic level to the biotechnology sector.

The project also coordinated, integrated and disseminated past and emerging research results. These were subsequently used to inform policymakers, funding agencies, academia and industry as to new ways to develop durable genetic resistance systems.

Resistvir succeeded in elucidating the state of the art research findings while encouraging new ways to develop genetic resistance, and to raise awareness of European excellence in this field. The developed web page will facilitate this by providing an ongoing specialised reference source for innovations in the field of molecular interactions between plants, viruses and vectors.

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