The 2nd International Spongospora Workshop, in combination with Pathology and Pests Section Meeting, Neuchatel, Switzerland, September 5, 2019

Spongospora workshop 2019

The 2nd International Spongospora Workshop (2ndISW) took place 3 years after the successful 1st ISW, held in Einsiedeln, Switzerland. The 2nd ISW, like previous similar meetings, focussed on the important potato pathogen Spongospora subterranea, and management of the quality- and yield-limiting diseases this pathogen causes for potato cropping in most countries where potatoes are important food sources.

The meeting was organised by U. Merz and R.E. Falloon

The 2nd ISW was held at the University of Neuchatel, Switzerland, in association with the EAPR Pathology & Pest Section meeting. Thirty-three delegates attended from 16 countries, including Australia, Chile, China, Finland, France, Germany, Israel, Netherlands, New Zealand, South Africa, Switzerland, Sweden, United Kingdom and United States of America. This reflects the continuing broad geographical significance of powdery scab and potato root diseases caused by Spongospora subterranea.

The 2ndISW included delegate-presented papers covering the following topics: Spongospora research history, country-specific aspects, latest research progress on Spongospora biology, genetics of host resistance, disease epidemiology, and chemical and physical approaches to disease management. The final Workshop discussion session concentrated on questions relating to problems from Spongospora infestation of peat growth media in potato minituber production, and the (mainly theoretical) methods to avoid these sources of the pathogen. The importance of disease prevention and the urgent need for utilizing effective host resistance were also discussed.