Fruit tree diagnostics system developed in Kazakhstan

baigenews.kz

A new Kazakh invention can determine with high accuracy whether a fruit tree is infected with a dangerous infectious disease. The new diagnostic system detects the bacterium Erwinia amylovora in plant DNA. This pathogen causes fire blight, especially in apple and pear trees. And it, in turn, can lead to the massive destruction of gardens in just two seasons. Scientists say that at present there is no effective treatment for this disease, and early diagnosis is the main prevention. Thus, the test system will help to preserve the famous Kazakh apple orchards.

“We’ve developed a test system. It’s based on what’s called an isothermal loop reaction method. Isothermal, because it runs at a certain temperature. It differs from PCR testing in that it is more sensitive. If we judge based on our measurements, it is 100 to 1,000 times more sensitive than polymerase PCR. At the same time, it does not give a false positive result. And this method doesn’t require expensive equipment to be purchased. This can be done in water baths. Essentially, this method can be used even in the field,” said Nurbol Galiakparov, laboratory head at the Institute of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry.

According to domestic developers, the test system is several times cheaper than foreign analogues and it is available for Kazakh gardeners. Scientists have already filed an application for a patent for the production of an industrial design.

 

Translation by Assem Zhanmukhanova

Editing by Galiya Khassenkhanova