Great success for POnTE and XF-ACTORS Annual meeting 2017 in Palma de Mallorca

The 2017 Annual Meeting of POnTE and XF-ACTORS Projects was successfully held on 15‒16 November 2017, at the University of the Balearic Islands, in Palma de Mallorca (Spain), following the three-day EFSA conference.

This first remarkable joint meeting of the two large projects was attended by more than one hundred leading scientific experts and a number of stakeholders from all over the world.

The focal points of the meeting comprised the effective presentations on:

  • General issues including administrative and financial aspects and progress of the overall project work plan as well as communication strategies and their implementation within both projects;

and the extraordinary sessions on three main pathosystems that were addressed by prominent scientific experts, reporting the most recent findings on:

  • Xylella fastidiosa, providing  an insight into ongoing activities for surveillance, diagnostic and detection of Xf as well as developing vector control tools and disease management strategies, risk assessment of Xf diseases and support for plant health decision-making, certification of plant propagation material and updates for the Xf database;
  • Pathogens of forestry, indicating the research progress, development of a RT-PCR protocol, diverse trials as well as various updates on Hymenoscyphus fraxineus and Phytophthora; characterization of genetic diversity within Hymenoscyphus fraxineus causing current dieback of ash in Europe, and multiple new cryptic pathogenic Phytophthora species from Fagaceae forests in Europe, and 
  • Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum, providing the research progress, preliminary results of an interlaboratory test for validation of diagnostic procedures for the detection of ‘Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum’; vector-mediated transmission of ‘Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum’ and epidemiological consequences; field monitoring and surveillance of CaLsol in carrot crops using smart traps and remote sensing devices mounted on terrestrial and aerial vehicles.

The presentations of the research progress were followed by the General Assembly session and the Second Annual Meeting was concluded by the Management Board Meeting.

The 2017 Annual Meeting was a great opportunity for experts and stakeholders to meet together, exchange ideas, new research findings, and discuss the major issues regarding the three key pathosystems as well as make new plans for future partnerships and devise effective strategies for the implementation of research results.

Group photo of participants at the annual meeting (By courtesy of Paolo Nouvion)

A complete photo album of the event has been made available by the XF-ACTORS Consortium at this link.