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EuroBlight report: New emerging blight clones continue rapid spread across Europe

Image result for potato late blightEuroBlight is continuously examining the ongoing evolution of the European population of the potato late blight pathogen and now reports on the 2017 results. Almost 1500 samples were genotyped from 16 countries last growing season. In its latest report, EuroBlight concludes that three new clones (EU_36_A2, EU_37_A2 and EU_41) continue to spread in 2017 and are displacing other populations. Around 75% of the samples belonged to defined clonal lineages also observed in previous seasons. Some clones are widespread and have been present in Europe for more than a decade, but the three emerging clones increased their combined frequency from 10% in 2016 to 28% of the population in 2017. The EuroBlight model of pathogen tracking is a rapid, cost-effective and co-ordinated approach to understanding pathogen evolution on a European scale. Data on the dominant clones has been passed to growers, advisors, breeders and agrochemical companies to provide practical management advice and shape longer-term strategies. More