Xylella Fastidiosa Active Containment Through a multidisciplinary-Oriented Research Strategy

Practice abstracts

The EIP-AGRI common format facilitates knowledge flows on innovative and practice-oriented projects from the start till the end of the project. The use of this format also enables farmers, advisors, researchers and all other actors across the EU to contact each other.

The agricultural European Innovation Partnership (EIP-AGRI) works to foster competitive and sustainable farming and forestry. Through the EIP-AGRI’s website, users can share innovative project ideas and practices, information about research and innovation projects, including projects’ results. Various EIP-AGRI-related publications are available for download on the website.

In line with the H2020 policy on multi-actor research projects involving the agricultural community and interlinking EIP-AGRI and H2020, XF-ACTORS contributes to sharing solutions/opportunities ready to implement in practice the measures to fight against Xylella fastidiosa.

Two practice abstracts are expected to be produced in the first 18 months of the projects. Two are already being issued and a third is expected for June 2018.

The European Innovation Partnership for Agricultural productivity and Sustainability (EIP-AGRI) has been launched in 2012 to contribute to the European Union’s strategy ‘Europe 2020’ for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth. The EIP-AGRI network is run by the European Commission (DG Agriculture and Rural Development) with the help of the EIP-AGRI Service Point.

Find out more about EIP-AGRI: https://ec.europa.eu/eip/agriculture/en

EIP-AGRI page dedicated to XF-ACTORS project: https://ec.europa.eu/eip/agriculture/en/find-connect/projects/xf-actors-xylella-fastidiosa-active-containment

Practice abstract - 1

XF-ACTORS is the first international research project in Europe entirely devoted to develop a multidisciplinary research program on the bacterium Xylella fastidiosa. The project is funded by the European Commission as part of the Horizon 2020 program. XF-ACTORS involves a large consortium: 29 Partners and Research Institutions, including 4 non-European research centers from USA, Brazil, Costa Rica and Taiwan, countries where the pathogen is known to be present since a long time.

The project wants to address the urgent need to improve prevention strategies, early detection and control of Xylella fastidiosa. XF-ACTORS aims to implement a multidisciplinary research program to fill the research gaps and strengthen the EU research capabilities with a global strategy for the integrated management of the outbreaks, so as to prevent the further spread of the bacterium in the EU territories and to mitigate the economic, environmental and social effects of the epidemics.

The stakeholders’ interests are an important driver of XF-ACTORS. Therefore, a Stakeholder Board has been settled, with the participation of representatives of international and national Plant Protection and quarantine services, policy makers at the EU level, growers, producers and nurserymen organizations and extension services.

The knowledge generated by XF-ACTORS research aims to a number of objectives, such as improving capacity of farmers to manage the disease and prevent further economic losses in crops; enhancing capacity and competence of plant health authorities to strengthen the EU plant health regime; generating positive impact towards the improvement of EU prevention measures (legislative provisions, technical procedures, means of disease control, etc.).


Submitted on November 2016

Practice abstract - 2

Xylella fastidiosa has re-emerged as global threat for agricultural crops, natural environment and landscape after the numerous findings reported from Europe ; confirming that when entering a new area with adequate ecological conditions, including suitable plant hosts, climate, and native vectors, this pathogen can rapidly become entrenched in the territory and infect a wide number of plant species. Several plant species found infected in the EU outbreaks/infected areas represent hitherto undescribed hosts for this bacterium.

The impact and the symptoms associated to the infections depend on hosts and X. fastidiosa strain combinations. As the bacterium invades xylem vessels it blocks the transport of water and mineral nutrients. As consequence, symptoms generally include leaf scorching, wilting of the foliage, defoliation, chlorosis and dwarfing and eventually plant death. The majority of these alterations can be confused with other biotic or abiotic causes (environmental stresses, water deficiencies, salt, air pollutants, nutritional problems, etc.).

Although, some host-strain-environment combinations can lead to symptomless/latent infections, a carefully examination of the symptoms (type of alterations, progression on the symptomatic plants, period of manifestation) is critical for the correct identification of potential infected hosts. Indeed, knowledge of the potential susceptible hosts of the strain(s) causing the infections in a specific outbreak/infected area is fundamental to efficiently support the inspections, survey and monitoring programs.

In the context of the current emerging scenario in Europe, the information about the the spread, the strains and the host plants are regularly updated by the European Commission (https://ec.europa.eu/food/plant/plant_health_biosecurity/legislation/emergency_measures/xylella-fastidiosa/latest-developments_en), and by the EU H2020 research Consortia developing research activities targeting this harmful pathogen.

A comphrensive illustrative review of symptoms recorded at International and EU level is public available on the website of the project XF-ACTORS (http://www.xfactorsproject.eu/press_review/pictures-symptoms-xylella-fastidiosa/) and of the complementary project POnTE (636645) (https://www.ponteproject.eu/symptom-database-xylella/).


Submitted on January 2018