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New Technique Improves Sensitivity of PCR Pathogen Detection
News

New Technique Improves Sensitivity of PCR Pathogen Detection

New Technique Improves Sensitivity of PCR Pathogen Detection
News

New Technique Improves Sensitivity of PCR Pathogen Detection

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A new procedure devised by U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists and colleagues can improve polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based methods of detecting plant disease organisms.

Bio-PCR works best with fast-growing bacteria such as Ralstonia solanacearum, which causes bacterial wilt of potato and tomato, and Acidovorax avenae, which causes bacterial fruit blotch of watermelon.

However, Bio-PCR also improves detection of slow-growing pathogens such as Xylella fastidiosa, responsible for Pierce's disease of grapes and leaf scorch of shade trees.

In studies with X. fastidiosa, Bio-PCR detected the bacterium in 90 percent of infected grape samples compared to 13 percent with conventional PCR methods.

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