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Recent advances in root diseases of pulses

06 Sep 2022

The 8th international workshop on root diseases of pulses, co-organised by INRAE (Igepp, Rennes) and Terres Inovia, was held virtually from 23 to 26 August 2022.

The workshop brought together more than 80 participants from Europe, the United Kingdom, North America, Australia, New Zealand, Africa and Asia and gave rise to some 40 presentations (keynote, oral, poster) on five themes:

1- epidemiology and diagnosis,
2- biology and genomics of pathogen populations,
3- plant*pathogen*microorganism interactions,
4- genetics and selection for resistance,
5- integrated disease management.

Terres Inovia presented recent advances in their work on resistance genetics, pathogen population diversity and integrated disease management in the aphanomyces/legume pathosystem.

Management of Aphanomyces root rot of pea in France
Aphanomyces root rot is the most damaging root disease of pea in France since the 90s. Epidemiological researches have been conducted for several years to have a better knowledge of the disease, and then design and implement effective prophylactic and cultural measures. An integrated disease management strategy is now proposed to farmers. The first step is to assess disease risk at the field level. A biological test to evaluate the inoculum potential (IP) level of the field has been developed but was little used by farmers despite extensive communication. Following this observation, an online tool has been proposed. It indicates the risk to have a low or a high IP, according to specific informations (soil type, rotation…). Then, advices are given to farmers according to the level of risk at the field level. Main advices concern i)-the sowing date for pea (winter or spring pea) and ii)- the other legume species that can be cultivated in the field without yield losses and without increasing IP. Recently, first tolerant cultivars have been marketed and integrated in this management strategy. The integration of other control methods, such as seed treatments, are currently studied.

A special issue of the scientific journal "Frontiers in Plant Science" was opened on the occasion of the workshop, collecting papers on the topic "Legume Root Diseases".

The next workshop (ILRD9) will be held as a satellite to the International Congress of the Legume Society in 2023 in Spain.

Contact: Anne Moussart,