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Pierce's Disease Symposium

February 2008
by Wines & Vines staff
Pierce's Disease Symposium
Attendees sipped wine and mingled during poster sessions.
San Diego, Calif. -- The California Department of Food and Agriculture brought together top researchers, concerned grapegrowers and other industry stakeholders to share insights and progress reports on the continuing battle against Pierce's disease (PD). Held in San Diego on Dec. 12-14, this seventh annual symposium drew attendance of more than 150 from around the world, to hear speakers on diverse approaches to the problem; chat with researchers who had posted their findings, and, perhaps most helpfully, engage in roundtable conversations with their peers.
Pierce's Disease Symposium
California Secretary of Agriculture A.G. Kawamura welcomed attendees.
Pierce's Disease Symposium
Raul Villanueva researched leafhoppers in North Carolina.
Pierce's Disease Symposium
Dr. Roger Innes, University of Indiana, chaired the research review.
Pierce's Disease Symposium
Jesse de León (left) discussed GWSS predators.
PHOTOS: Ken Freeze
PD's notorious vector, the glassy-winged sharpshooter (GWSS)--and potential methods of eradicating or neutralizing it--was the target for most of the symposium's first full day. Xylella fastidiosa, the bacteria that causes PD in grapevines and variegated chlorosis in citrus, was the focus of the second morning, with presentations on genetic controls and disease identification in the afternoon. The symposium is held each year to foster communication, so that all can benefit from each other's progress.

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