$150,000 to develop new technologies for rapid and early detection of the non-native, invasive fungus Ceratocystis fagacearum, which causes the mostly fatal disease in oak trees. Principal investigator is Abdennour Abbas, assistant professor in the bioproducts and biosystems engineering department.
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Winter 2017 update
The project aims at developing a field-testing platform for rapid detection of oak wilt caused by the fungus C.fagacearum. Over the last year, we have developed a technology for fungi and fungal DNA extraction from wood chips and another technology for rapid DNA detection using chemiluminescence. We are currently working on combining these two technologies to develop a portable DNA extraction and detection platform, to enable field detection of oak wilt within one hour using a hand-held luminometer.