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Bursaphelenchus xylophilus, the pinewood nematode, is the causal agent of the pine wilt disease. This parasite attacks conifers causing rapid wilt and death and leading to severe economic loses. The nematode has been identified in the United States, Asia (Japan, China and Korea) and was recently detected in Portugal. So far this is the only country of the European Community affected.

The GEOBURSA test identifies the geographic origin of the nematode, based on SNPs discovered through transcriptome sequencing of isolates from different regions in the world. The test combines highly specific probes and the sensitivity of end point PCR to differentiate isolates from USA, Japan, China and Portugal.

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