Processors and Growers Research Organisation

Understanding the diversity of organisms contributing to foot and root rot disease in faba bean in the United Kingdom

The aim of my PhD project is to describe the essential disease causal agent for faba bean root rot in the UK and develop a risk prediction system for farmers. Foot and root rot is a disease complex with a number of organisms contributing to the disease. The project will first investigate the causal agents of disease using a combination of classical pathology (isolation/culturing/pathogenicity studies) and molecular identification (DNA barcoding). Following characterisation, species specific molecular tools will be developed to enable a broader survey of plant and soil from bean growing locations from around the UK.  

We will also evaluate DNA extraction methods from soil with the aim of developing a risk prediction service for growers, focused on profiling the presence of the key disease-causing agents at sites. Finally, we will evaluate faba bean germplasm available in the UK for the presence of resistance/tolerance phenotypes which could become the focus of future breeding programs and integrated disease management strategies.   






Basem Attar

Start Date: April 2022

Duration of study: 4 years