August 5, 2004
By Paul Hollis, Farm Press Editorial Staff
Tifton-- What researchers don't know about tomato spotted wilt virus is a lot, says Alex Csinos, University of Georgia research pathologist, but they continue to learn more each year.
“We think the disease is complicated by many factors,” said Csinos during this year's Georgia Tobacco Tour. “Just about anything you can think of has something to do with tomato spotted wilt virus in some fashion.”
Researchers believe, he says, that the severity of the virus is affected by weather conditions. “Weather conditions affect not only the development of virus symptoms on the plant, but they also affect the development of thrips, the insects that transmit the disease to tobacco plants,” says Csinos.
Other factors that affect the development of the virus include weeds and host crops planted around a field, he says. In addition, the location of a field can be a factor, he adds.
“This is an extremely complex system, and you can’t pick out just one thing and say if we do this one thing we'll be free and clear of the virus. That's not going to happen. It's going to require a very intensive management program, and that’s where we’re headed with this research. But there are many things we still don't know about tomato spotted wilt virus,” says Csinos.
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