College of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resource Sciences

Department of Plant Pathology

November in the News

Faculty Featured in Good Fruit Grower

Research by Dr. Ken Eastwell, professor of plant pathology and Director, Clean Plant Center, was featured in Good Fruit Grower.Dr. Eastwell’s program focuses on reducing the economic impact of virus diseases of vegatatively propagated perennial crops including fruit trees, grapevines, hops, and flower crops. This is accomplished by identifying etiological agents associated with graft-transmisslble diseases; developing molecular and serological tests as an aid to the advancement of disease management strategies. As the director of the Clean Plant Center, Dr. Eastwell provides leadership to the development and distribution of clones of deciduous fruit trees, grapevines and hops that are free of viruses and virus-like agents.

Phytopathology Editor’s Pick

Refereed Journal article from Dr. David Weller’s group, “Biological Control of Take-All by Fluorescent Pseudomonas spp. from Chinese Wheat Fields. Ming-Ming Yang, Dmitri V. Mavrodi, Olga V. Mavrodi, Robert F. Bonsall, James A. Parejko, Timothy C. Paulitz, Linda S. Thomashow, He-Tong Yang, David M. Weller, and Jian-Hua Guo” that came out in the December issue of Phytopathology, was chosen as the Editor’s Pick.

Webinar on Snow Molds

Dr. Tim Murray, professor and former chair of plant pathology, was invited by the Washington and Idaho grain commissions to present a webinar on “Snow molds in the Pacific Northwest”. Dr. Murray’s research specialty and interests include diseases of small cereal grain crops, especially wheat. Ecology, epidemiology, and control of soilborne plant pathogens, including cultural, chemical, and disease resistance. Genetics of disease resistance and the use of alien species as sources of disease resistance genes. Mapping and tagging disease resistance genes with molecular markers. Dr. Murray is part of a multidisciplinary team developing perennial wheat as a new alternative crop to reduce soil erosion. In recognition of his expertise on cereal diseases, Dr. Murray was invited to chair the committee developing the U.S. recovery plan for wheat stem rust race Ug99 and is a member of the USDA Ug99 Action Plan working group. He provided leadership in developing the WSU Plant & Pest Diagnostic eNetwork in his role as the representative to the Western Plant Diagnostic Network.As the founding Editor-in-Chief of Plant Health Progress, Dr. Murray provided the visionary leadership that lead to publication of the first APS electronic-only journal and establishment of the multi-journal, multi-disciplinary Plant Management Network as a web portal for credible science-based information on management of plants and their problems by practitioners.

On Solid Ground Feature

Research by Dr. Brenda Schroeder, Assistant Professor in the department, was featured in the November 8 edition of On Solid Ground. Dr. Schroeder conducts research on bacterial diseases of vegetable crops, with focus on the study of pathogenicity and virulence factors by bacterial plant pathogens. Dr. Schroeder uses traditional plant pathology, phytobacteriology, molecular genetics and genomics to investigate the production of pathogenicity and virulence factors to better understand the pathogen and ultimately control these diseases.

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