European Journal of Plant Pathology

, Volume 131, Issue 2, pp 277–287 | Cite as

Evaluation of the Sss AgriStrip rapid diagnostic test for the detection of Spongospora subterranea on potato tubers

  • Karima Bouchek-Mechiche
  • Françoise Montfort
  • Ueli Merz


Spongospora subterranea, f.sp. subterranea (Sss), which causes powdery scab, is mainly spread through infected seed tubers and survives in contaminated soil for many years. The visual assessment of tuber lots by inspectors carries the risk of misidentification due to the difficulty of distinguishing lesions caused by either Sss or Streptomyces spp.. To avoid this, the “Sss AgriStrip”, a rapid and lab-independent test tool based on a lateral flow immunoassay has been developed, and we assessed its accuracy and sensitivity for detecting Sss. The Sss AgriStrip performed as well as other lab-based identification methods. The Sss AgriStrip, microscopy, ELISA, PCR, and real-time PCR techniques identified infection with S. subterranea in all tubers with typical powdery scab lesions. When lots with tubers showing a mixture of typical and atypical (suspicious) symptoms were tested, the presence of S. subterranea was confirmed in all lesions by all methods. The DNA content was generally lower in atypical than in typical lesions. Diverse and suspicious symptoms, which were difficult to assign to either powdery or common scab, tested negative with Sss AgriStrip and the other methods. This was despite microscopic observation of sporosori-like structures in some samples. Isolation and molecular identification confirmed that these lesions were mostly caused by Streptomyces spp. The Sss AgriStrip is as sensitive as DAS-ELISA with a detection limit between 1 and 10 sporosori per ml buffer. It is ideal for rapid and selective detection of Sss on farms and border inspection points to prevent spread of the pathogen.


Lateral flow immunoassay Seed tuber certification Suspicious lesions Streptomyces spp. 



We would like to thank F. Croisat and P. Hamon for technical assistance, Y. Le Hingrat (FN3PT, France) for supplying some of the samples, T. Oberhaensli (Bioreba AG, Switzerland), Y. Le Hingrat (FN3PT, France), C. Chatot and E. Bonnel (Germicopa), C. Dagorn (GNIS) for critical reading of the manuscript. This work received support from GNIS and CNIPT.


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Copyright information

© KNPV 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Karima Bouchek-Mechiche
    • 1
  • Françoise Montfort
    • 2
  • Ueli Merz
    • 3
  1. 1.GNIS/INRA INRA Centre de RennesUMR 1099 BiO3P INRA-Agrocampus Ouest-Université RennesLe RHEU CedexFrance
  2. 2.INRA INRA Centre de RennesUMR 1099 BiO3P INRA-Agrocampus Ouest-Université RennesLe RHEU CedexFrance
  3. 3.Plant Pathology/IBZETH ZurichZurichSwitzerland

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