Academic Year:  2013-2014
Name:  Denita Hadziabdic Guerry                                            
Department:  EPP
UTIA Appointment Research Assistant Professor
Student:  Forestry: Dixie Daniels
Student Department:  Forestry, Wildlife, and Fisheries, Major: Forest Resource Management
Title of Student Project:  To the vector go the spoils:  Identifying fungal pathogens associated with
                                           Thousand Cankers Disease complex.
Publications:  In progress (summer research study)

To the vector go the spoils: Identifying fungal pathogens associated with walnut twig beetle, a vector of with Thousand Cankers Disease complex (Abstract to APS)

Presentations:  none
Other Products:  none
Abstract of Student Project (when completed):  
       Black walnut (Juglans nigra) trees, native to Eastern and Midwestern parts of the United States, are an important crop both as a food source for animals, and as a nut and timber source for humans (Grant et al. 2011). Currently, black walnut are under threat by a fungus, Geosmithia morbida, vectored by walnut twig beetle (WTB) Pityophthorus juglandis (Tisserat et al. 2009; Kolarík et al. 2011). The fungus causes wilting and yellowing of leaves, branch dieback and canopy loss, and the formation of cankers underneath the bark, leading to the disease complex known as Thousand Cankers Disease (TCD) (Cranshaw and Tisserat 2009; Kolarík et al. 2011). The distribution of WTB ranges from Oregon, to Pennsylvania, to Arizona. However, the distribution and origin of G. morbida is yet unknown (Seybold et al. 2012).
       Although G. morbida has been determined to be the primary causal agent of TCD, there is limited research regarding secondary or opportunistic pathogens associated with TCD complex. Fungi found to be associated with this disease complex, such as Fusarium solani, are known causes of cankers in other species such as red oak, English walnut, and cottonwood (Toole 1963; Vujanovic et al. 1999; Chen and Swart 2000). F. solani has been found on black walnut, but thus far only in the final stages of decline (Seybold et al. 2012). The goal of this experiment is to identify pathogens associated with WTB infestation with relation to G. morbida and TCD complex.

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Student: Dixie Daniels

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Mentor: Denita Hadziabdic Guerry