IPN - Instituto Pedro Nunes

IPN     IPN Incubadora

CA16107 - Integrating knowledge on Xanthomonadaceae for the integrated management of plant diseases in Europe


The main challenge that is addressed by the Action are present, emerging or re-emerging plant diseases due to infection by bacteria of the Xanthomonadaceae family, which are continually challenging food security and cause significant losses to the COST countries’ economy each year. This challenge demands concerted R&D actions at the international level, which will be supported by the COST Action networking instruments.


The Management Committee defined four general goals for the COST Action:
Exchange of knowledge about the state-of-the art in phytopathology with respect to members of the Xanthomonadaceae family
Strategic planning of approaches that need to be developed for sustainable plant protection against infection by Xanthomonadaceae
Sharing of technical knowhow, methods and tools (lab work, bioinformatics)
Foresightful career development for early-career investigators

To develop, implement, compare and standardize methods of pathogen detection by coordinating research on molecular diagnostics of plant-pathogenic Xanthomonadaceae (WG1)
To estimate the risk of epidemics and outbreaks by coordinating research on the genetic diversity and population structure of plant-associated Xanthomonadaceae (WG1).
To develop, distribute and valorize bioinformatics tools for data analysis by coordinating research and development in the field of epidemiology and population genetics (WG1).
To identify key bacterial factors in the microbe-eukaryote interaction at different steps of the infection/dissemination cycle by coordinating research on the pathogen’s biology (WG2).
To identify elicitors of plant defense responses as targets for resistance breeding by coordinating research on pathogen-associated molecular patterns and effector-triggered immunity (WG2).
To discover novel resistance traits by coordinating research on QTL mapping, genome-wide association studies, comparative genomics and transcriptome analyses (WG3).
To generate durably resistant crop cultivars by coordinating research and development in the field of breeding, transgenesis and genome editing of resistance traits (WG3).
To evaluate and establish disease control measurements by coordinating research on the impact of biological products/microorganisms to control xanthomonads and Xylella fastidiosa and to prevent the spread of infections (WG4).
To evaluate and compare approaches to eliminate or reduce vector populations by coordinating research on adapted agronomic practices, effects of volatile compounds, and trapping systems (WG4).

Objectives, Activities and Results expected / achieved

1. Setup of a Twitter account, fed by the community of COST Action participants, that will notify on events, break-through discoveries, and societal aspects of developments with relevance to the EuroXanth COST Action
2. Establishment and curation of a dedicated Scoop.it! account on latest scientific publications with high relevance to the EuroXanth COST Action
3. Consortium website/newsletter that will provide information about events that are organized in the frame of the EuroXanth COST Action and which will disseminate network-relevant information, such as step-by-step protocols, factsheets, opinions, etc.
4. Co-organisation of the 6th Xanthomonas Genomics Conference, which will take place in Halle (Saale), Germany, in 2018
5. Protocols for detection of Xanthomonadaceae listed as quarantine organisms in Europe (EPPO A1 and A2 lists of pests recommended for regulation as quarantine pests)
6. List of molecular markers useful to study the genetic diversity and population structure of plant-associated Xanthomonadaceae
7. Curated, internet-accessible database for molecular typing of plant-associated Xanthomonadaceae essentially for epidemiological purposes
8. Personnel from ITC (Inclusiveness Target Countries) and non-ITC trained in the use of software, databases and websites relevant for detection, molecular typing and epidemiology of bacterial pathogens
9. Protocols for resistance and pathogenicity screening of the most important crop species and bacterial strains covered by the EuroXanth COST Action
10. Repertoire of important candidate bacterial factors in the microbe-eukaryote interaction at different steps of the infection/dissemination cycle
11. Inventory of plant resistance genes, allelic variants and quantitative trait loci (QTL) in crop species that are effective against infection by members of the Xanthomonadaceae family
12. Recommendation of disease control measures based on a better understanding of the microbe-eukaryote interaction and the effects of bio-control approaches on pathogen populations
13. Trained next-generation investigators who are well connected in a stimulating trans-national career network

Project Reference


Intervention Region



36 Months

Start Date


End Date


Approval Date



Partner Countries: Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, fYR Macedonia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom
COST Near Neighbour Countries Institution: Albania, Jordan
COST International Partner Countries: United States of America


Xanthomonas sp.;
Xylella fastidiosa;
Diversity – population structure;
Pathogen biology;
Genetic resistance;
Host defense;
Disease management;
Vector control.