Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Sverdlovsk village of Oshkukovo quarantined after potato parasite found

Sverdlovsk regional health officials have ordered the quarantine of potato crops in the village of Oshkukovo after discovering the presence of golden potato cyst nematodes-- a pathogen potentially hazardous to humans.

Thirty soil samples were taken from several acres, and 12 revealed the presence of the parasite, with an estimated 2.3 acres affected by it. The village was quarantined to eliminate part of the infection, ITAR-TASS reports.

The ministry's soil analysis was conducted in March following a string of reported cases of roundworm, which is a common byproduct of the nematode that affects both tomato and potato tuber crops. Incidents of roundworm were reported in a total of 170 villages and 14 farms in the Sverdlovsk region this year.

The golden potato cyst nematode, when untreated, kills approximately 30 percent of tuber crops. Regional health experts estimate that it will take between 10-15 years to fully eliminate the pathogen from the affected farms. During the quarantine period, no crops are permitted to be planted in the areas affected by the nematode, according to ITAR-TASS.

Scientists have identified two variations of the golden potato crop that are resistant to the nematode.