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PCN, a threat to food security and international trade.


Potato cyst nematode (Globodera rostochiensis) in Central Asia :food security and international trade threat

Tech Area / Field

  • AGR-DIS/Disease Surveillance/Agriculture
  • AGR-PPR/Plant Protection/Agriculture
  • BIO-CGM/Cytology, Genetics and Molecular Biology/Biotechnology

3 Approved without Funding

Registration date

Leading Institute
Kyrgyz Institute of Livestock and Pasture, Kyrgyzstan, Bishkek


  • California Department of Food and Agriculture Plant Pest Diagnostic Center, USA, CA, Sacramento\nUSDA-ARS, Horticultural Crops Laboratory, USA, OR, Corvallis\nMichigan State University, USA, MI, East Lansing

Project summary

The goals of this project are to: 1) Determine the extent of cyst nematode infestations throughout the potato growing regions of Kyrgyzstan, 2) Use both morphological and molecular technologies to accurately identify the cyst nematode species associated with these infestations, and 3) Develop environmentally friendly potato cyst nematode management practices: with special reference to new and novel botanically-based nematicides.
Potato cyst nematodes are quarantine pests/pathogens of major significance. Infringement of the rules of international seed potato transportation, potato mono-cropping and cultivation of susceptible plant species has resulted in this serious and widespread problem. While plant breeders have developed potato varieties with resistance to cyst nematodes. this resistance is nematode species specific. The G. pallida is able to overcome the dominant resistant gene H and has three prototypes (Ra 1, Ra 2 and Ra 3). This means that for successful deployment of resistant varieties, it is essential to have properly identified the cyst nematode species of interest. Currently, potato varieties with resistant to G. rostochiensis are available, however, varieties with resistance to G. pallida is much less advanced. It is essential, therefore, to accurately identify the species before selecting a nematode resistant variety. Unfortunately, it is difficult to differentiate between these two species using classical morphological characteristics. In addition, five pathotypes of the Golden nematode have been identified (Ro 1-normal, Ro 2, Ro 3, Ro 4 and Ro 5-aggressive). It is imperative, therefore that both classical morphological and modern molecular technologies be used for timely and accurate diagnostics and research.
To date, only general articles about the distribution of the Golden Nematode in Kyrgyzstan have been published by the Department of Plant Protection and Quarantine and the Department of Chemicalization and Plant Protection. Potato farmers, however, are very concerned about the occurrence of this potato nematode and associated highly significant decreases in tuber yields. Some tuber yield losses have been close to 100%. There is an urgent need for the development and implementation of integrated potato cyst nematode practices that include the use of good agronomic practices, resistant varieties and new/novel environmentally friendly nematicides. Fortunately, screening of higher plants with pesticidal potential began in 2001 through financial support of ISTC (Projects KR-482 and KR 1122.2). Plants with insecticidal, acaricidal, growth stimulating and nematicidal activity were identified among the more than 200 plant species evaluated. These studies provide a unique and very strong foundation for continuation of targeted search for species with nematicial activity, plant species suitable for creation of botanically-based nematicides to protect potato plants from cyst nematodes.
The project will consist of the following five tasks:
1. Conduct a comprehensive and statistically valid potato cyst nematode survey throughout the potato growing regions of Kyrgyzstan.
2. Use both morphological and molecular technology to identify the Globodera spp. present in Kyrgyzstan. This will be done in cooperation with the Nematology Laboratory of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Agricultural Research Service, Horticultural Crops Research Laboratory at Oregon State University in Corvalis, Oregon. In addition theUSDA, Animal, Plant and Health Inspection Service and Michigan State University (MSU) Diagnostic Services will assist in providing training for young Kyrgyzstan professionals in the domain of rapid and accurate identification of cyst nematode species.
3. Identify botanical chemicals with nematicidal activity against Globodera spp.
4. Develop and evaluate botanical nematicides.
5. Design environmentally friendly integrated potato cyst nematode control practices for Kyrgyzstan potato growers. This will be done in cooperation with the G. W. Bird Nematology Laboratory at MSU: with special reference to the identification and evaluation of cyst nematode resistant potato varieties from the Michigan State University potato breeding program under the direction of Dr. David Douches and Dr. Cholani Weebadde of the Department of Plant, Soil and Microbial Sciences.. In addition, Michigan State University and the USDA, Animal, Plant and Health Inspection Service and Michigan will assist in providing training for young Kyrgyzstan professionals in the domainbs of conducting comprehensive and statistically valid nematode surveys and development of ecological sound nematode management practices.


The International Science and Technology Center (ISTC) is an intergovernmental organization connecting scientists from Kazakhstan, Armenia, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Georgia with their peers and research organizations in the EU, Japan, Republic of Korea, Norway and the United States.


ISTC facilitates international science projects and assists the global scientific and business community to source and engage with CIS and Georgian institutes that develop or possess an excellence of scientific know-how.

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