Seed Pathology and Pathological Testing

  • Larry O. Copeland
  • Miller B. McDonald


In many parts of the world, testing for seedborne diseases is an integral part of the routine inspection for seed quality. However, in North America, pathological testing has not been as important as purity and germination testing. This is partially because of uncertainty about whether the analytical results are significant enough to justify the expense of maintaining a pathological testing program. Additionally, large samples may have to be screened for results to be meaningful. Some pathogens can cause severe losses if as few as one seed in 10,000 to 50,000 seeds are infected. Problems in reliably detecting such small levels of infection and relating them to field losses are formidable, and these tests inevitably require much larger space and labor investments than do most other types of seed quality tests. Consequently, pathological testing of seed in North America has not developed to the level needed and is too often not a part of the routine seed laboratory analysis.


Tall Fescue Fungal Endophyte Soybean Mosaic Virus Plant Disease Reporter Storage Fungus 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Larry O. Copeland
    • 1
  • Miller B. McDonald
    • 2
  1. 1.Michigan State UniversityUSA
  2. 2.Ohio State UniversityUSA

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