New service boosts nematode testing

3 January 1997

New service boosts nematode testing

POTATO cyst nematode testing got a boost this week with the launch of a new service which identifies both the number and species of nematode present in soil samples.

"The current goal of potato cyst nematode control is for intensive sampling and integrated management.

"But that is hampered by the problem of cost and efficiency of analysis," says Anna Budden of Natural Resource Management in Bracknell, Berks.

The new test uses ELISA techniques developed by IACR-Rothamsted, Zeneca and Natural Resource Management. It can identify live, potentially invasive nematodes, and differentiate between species. Unlike visual assessment it is not prone to human error, claims NRM.

Results guaranteed within a week and supplied as both the number of eggs/g of soil and the ratio of Globodera rostochiensis to G. pallida. Armed with that information growers can manage the pest far more effectively, maintains NRMs Michael Eustace.

Cost is £20 per sample, which includes transport and packaging. The test will be available this month, from NRM only.

Pinpointing PCNproblems…Anna Budden and Owen Williams of NRMcheck one of the first test plates.

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