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A BCA against brown rot on stone fruit

Brown rot caused by Monilinia spp. is one of the economically most important fungal diseases of stone fruit in Europe. The following slides will explain more about brown rot and our tasks to develop an effective strategy based on biocontrol to control brown rot in stone fruit.

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A BCA against brown rot on stone fruit

  1. 1. Brown rot on stone fruits The BIOCOMES project brings together 27 partners developing 11 novel biological control products for pests and diseases One of these diseases is brown rot on stone fruits. The following slides will explain more about brown rot and our tasks to develop an effective strategy based on biocontrol to control it in European stone fruit producing areas.
  2. 2. Brown rot caused by Monilinia spp. is one of the economically most important fungal diseases of stone fruit in Europe. Stone fruit (peaches, nectarines, apricots, plums and cherries) production in Europe reaches to 4.2 millions of tones. The main producer countries are Italy, Spain, Greece and France.
  3. 3. Brown rot causes substantial pre-harvest and post-harvest losses. In the BIOCOMES project we aimed to develop a new strategy based on two new biological control agents (BCA’s). One BCA based on a fungus and the other based on a bacterium.
  4. 4. The filamentous fungus Penicillium frequentans 909 isolated by INIA and the bacterium Bacillus amyloliquefaciens CPA-8 isolated by IRTA have demonstrated good efficacy as biocontrol agents against Monilinia spp. on stone fruits.
  5. 5. During the first year, knowledge on biological and physical properties of both BCAs was completed: effect of temperature, water activity, susceptibility to antibiotics and genetic stability.
  6. 6. INIA and IRTA characterized and developed molecular markers to identify and differentiate P. frequentans 909 and B. amyloliquefaciens CPA-8, respectively, from the rest of microbiota.
  7. 7. At the same time TU Graz conducted the determination of relevant metabolites produced by P. frequentans 909 and B. amyloliquefaciens CPA-8.
  8. 8. The next step was optimization of production and scaling up both biocontrol agents: liquid in the case of B. amyloliquefaciens CPA-8 (IRTA) and solid in the case of P. frequentans Pf909 (Bayer CropScience) P. frequentans 909 B. amyloliquefaciens CPA-8
  9. 9. At Bayer CropScience Biologics researchers developed new liquid formulations for P. frequentans 909 BCA and studied the physical characteristics, shelf life and stability. The best formulations were prepared to be applied at field treatments during fruit seasons.
  10. 10. Formulation of CPA-8 was studied and optimized by a team of researchers from IRTA using liquid and solid (freeze-drying and fluid-bed spray-drying) formulations. Again the best formulations (fluid-bed spray-dried) were chosen and tested during the field trials.
  11. 11. Two formulations of each BCA were tested at field conditions during the 2014 and 2015 fruit seasons in Catalonia. The field trials were conducted by OPENNATUR and IRTA in order to stablish the more suitable strategy to control Brown rot on peaches and nectarines
  12. 12. The efficacy of both formulated BCAs was evaluated at harvest and after incubation postharvest period. Efficacy of both BCAs have been shown under standard level of disease. However, high pressure of disease and adverse meteorological conditions reduces efficacy of the biocontrol strategies.
  13. 13. It has been possible to broaden the spectrum of action of both BCAs to different stone fruits: nectarines, cherries, plums, apricots and flat peaches.
  14. 14. With a rainfall simulator, IRTA studied the tolerance of both formulations of each BCA to rain wash, demonstrating a very good persistence.
  15. 15. Validation of the biocontrol strategies has been tested during the fruit season of 2016 in Belgium (Pcfruit) for cherries and in France (OPENNATUR), Italy (BIOGARD) and Spain (OPENNATUR-IRTA) for peaches and nectarines.
  16. 16. Scenario 2 Uncontrolable disease: High inoculum and extremely adverse meteorological conditions Scenario 3 Controlable disease: Inoculum and conditions in which disease is worthwhile and possible to be controled Scenario 1 No inoculum in the field: no treatments necessary Efficacy of both BCA agents has been shown in different producing areas in Europe • Scenario 1: If there is not inoculum no control strategy is needed • Scenario 2: Under adverse conditions BCAs or chemicals were not generally effective • Scenario 3: If level of inoculum is controlable (low-medium or medium-high) BCAs are able to control brown rot and sometimes similarly than chemicals 2016 3 different scenarios:
  17. 17. IRTA and INIA then studied the shelf life of the formulated products. Different packages and storage conditions are being tested. The results are promising.
  18. 18. The orchards are ready for the final validation of efficacy in Europe. The trials are being conducted in the present fruit season of 2017.
  19. 19. This project has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement no 612713 This presentation gives a quick overview of the development of a control strategy based on biocontrol against Brown rot on stone fruits. Visit our website to read more about our work on Brown rot and other biological control products we will develop.