UF/IFAS Professor Wins $300,000 Grant For Citrus Greening Research

A University of Florida researcher who helped develop a mathematical model to show how citrus greening spreads within infected trees has received a $300,000 grant from the Esther B. O’Keeffe Foundation to expand the model.

Ariena van Bruggen, a UF plant pathology professor, received the award so she can study the best strategies to combat citrus greening from tree to tree. There is no cure for citrus greening, but methods being used to slow the disease include removal of symptomatic trees, insect control, and attempts to boost the tree’s immune system, van Bruggen said. “I want to find out with this model which is the more important part of the solution,” she said. “Can we actually boost the immune system of the tree enough so that that would give you proper control? More likely it’s a combination of factors. But perhaps the moving of diseased trees, as it has been done so far, is not going to be as effective.”

Removing diseased new growth – called flush, or shoots – solves little, the current model shows. Even without showing symptoms, many shoots may already be infected. That means other tree parts can get infected.
The model developed by van Bruggen and colleagues was published in 2012 by the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. It showed once a tree is infected, insecticides applied early on may only slow, rather than halt, the disease’s progression.

Foundation trustee Brian O’Keeffe said van Bruggen’s research provides crucial information to understand the spread of citrus greening.

“Such increased understanding could help develop better techniques in hopefully managing the disease,” O’Keeffe said.

The importance of such studies has been underscored in the past month by USDA’s $1 million additional research funding to its emergency response against citrus greening spreading nationwide, he said.

“Understanding the transmission of the disease within an infected tree is essential to try to defend the existence of Florida’s and many other states’ citrus industries,” O’Keeffe said.

Source: UF/IFAS

Topics: ,

Leave a Reply

Citrus Stories
CitrusNew App Helps Identify Insects, Diseases, And Nutrient Deficiencies
February 24, 2015
Spensa Technologies launches app that helps growers take control of pests and improve soil nutrients. Read More
CitrusPacked Political Agenda On Tap For Florida Farmers
February 23, 2015
The Florida Fruit & Vegetable Association’s board of directors are working on a number of key issues that will be front-burner throughout 2015. Read More
CitrusWest Coast Governors Call For End To Port Labor Impasse
February 19, 2015
U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez helps mediate discussions between dockworkers and port operators. Read More
CitrusCompanion Biological Fungicide Now OMRI Listed
February 19, 2015
The biological fungicide from Growth Products is now registered for use in organic production. Read More
Varieties & RootstocksExperimental Florida Mandarins Measure Up
February 19, 2015
Variety display day results show Florida citrus research and development is on the right track. Read More
Insect & Disease UpdateScientists Cue Up 3D Printing In Quest To Quash Citrus Greening
February 18, 2015
Multidimensional technology used to build “SmartTrap” for vector of the disease. Read More
CitrusNew Desalination Technology May Be The Answer To California’s Drought
February 18, 2015
Researchers plan to address concerns with a process that will examine ways to turn seawater into drinkable water. Read More
The Latest
FNV logo
CitrusPMA Announces Funding For Major Produce Marketing Progr…
February 26, 2015
The produce industry is getting into brand marketing in a big way. The Produce Marketing Association (PMA) has announced the launch of a new promotional campaign - FNV - designed to take a page from the marketing strategies of big-money consumer brands like Nike and Apple. Read More
CitrusFDA, Federal Partners Develop New Method For Attributin…
February 25, 2015
Data was analyzed from nearly 1,000 outbreaks to assess which categories of foods were most responsible for making people sick. Read More
CitrusBiocontrols 2015: Exhibition Sneak Preview
February 25, 2015
We take a look inside the exhibit hall at the Biocontrols 2015 Conference & Tradeshow. Read More
CitrusNew App Helps Identify Insects, Diseases, And Nutrient …
February 24, 2015
Spensa Technologies launches app that helps growers take control of pests and improve soil nutrients. Read More
CitrusPacked Political Agenda On Tap For Florida Farmers
February 23, 2015
The Florida Fruit & Vegetable Association’s board of directors are working on a number of key issues that will be front-burner throughout 2015. Read More
CitrusWest Coast Governors Call For End To Port Labor Impasse
February 19, 2015
U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez helps mediate discussions between dockworkers and port operators. Read More
CitrusCompanion Biological Fungicide Now OMRI Listed
February 19, 2015
The biological fungicide from Growth Products is now registered for use in organic production. Read More
CitrusNew Desalination Technology May Be The Answer To Califo…
February 18, 2015
Researchers plan to address concerns with a process that will examine ways to turn seawater into drinkable water. Read More
David Holden
CitrusBiopesticides, Biostimulants Show Results In Fruits And…
February 18, 2015
From biostimulants in celery and avocado to biopesticides in citrus and strawberries, consultant David Holden conducts in-the-field research that attests to the effectiveness of biocontrols. Read More
CitrusMegadrought In The West Predicted By End Of The Century
February 18, 2015
Lowering greenhouse gases will reduce risk, scientists say. Read More
CitrusIRS Change Could Pay Off In More Citrus Plantings
February 17, 2015
Florida Citrus Mutual is pushing a proposal forward that will allow growers to directly write off putting new trees in the ground. Read More
CitrusFlorida Citrus Poised For A Comeback
February 12, 2015
About halfway through the 2014-2015 season, and the crop could go either way. Read More
CitrusTier 4 Regulations Pique Propane Interest
February 12, 2015
New rules are extending to non-road applications like irrigation engines. Read More
CitrusSearch Is On For The Next Miss Florida Citrus
February 11, 2015
Pre-Miss America pageant makes its return offering contestants a chance to represent the industry and further their education. Read More
CitrusIs The ‘Agripocalypse’ Nearing? [Opinion]
February 10, 2015
Recent report indicates time is not on agriculture's side. Action is needed now to keep future growers engaged. Read More
CitrusFlorida Citrus Crop Holding On
February 10, 2015
Updated USDA forecast shows no change in orange and grapefruit yield. Read More
CitrusAgriculture Among Top Paying College Degrees Of 2015
February 9, 2015
Report reveals good news for graduates looking to make some green in farming. Read More
CitrusFlorida Agriculture Commissioner Pipes Up To Protect St…
February 5, 2015
Adam Putnam testifies before joint Congressional hearing on the impacts of WOTUS. Read More