Activity: Other › Types of other (prices, external and other activities) - (Co)promotor masterthesis
The study investigated the possible threats of Scutellonema bradys on potato production by evaluating the host suitability and damage symptoms of the nematode on specific potato varieties grown in Europe as well as in Africa. The probability of nematode entry, spread and establishment in Europe was also investigated by performing a pest risk analysis. Inoculation of potato with S. bradys caused varying damage levels to the different potato varieties. The nematode infected both roots and tubers, resulting in scaly surface appearance of tubers, brown root lesions and tuber rot. The uninfected tubers appeared virtually healthy compared to infected tubers. The total number of nematodes recovered was greatest for Desiree, Spunta and Nicola (2 fold increase in populations), while reproduction was low on Diamant and Draga varieties, where a 1.1 and 0.8 fold increase were observed respectively. A pest risk analysis showed that the likelihood of entry of S. bradys from third countries into the European Union is high due to continuous importation of yam tubers that can be infected with S. bradys from infested regions of Africa. Establishment of the nematode is possible due to the presence of hosts like yam, potato and tomato in the PRA area. Spread of the nematode is likely because of the available pathways like tubers of host plants, soil originating from infested areas, soil attached to equipment, shoes and machinery and travellers carrying plant parts and/or soil samples. The study demonstrated that potato can be damaged by S. bradys and highlighted the need to reduce the risk of nematode entry and spread within the European Union region as well as in Africa.