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Objectif végétal : une dynamique partenariale

Separated by coma

Innovative strategies of control of pathogenic agents transmitted by/to seeds

Last update: August 2017


Hubert Lybeert
Researcher, seed pathology
HM Clause

« Selling a healthy seed, free from any parasite that may develop from the seedling to its harvest stage, is a major concern of a seed company. Indeed, the financial implications would be disastrous if a pathogen, by virtue of this vertical transmission path, would annihilate a crop, or even touch those of the surrounding plots.

Without obtaining new varieties that would resist these parasites genetically, two solutions are available to the seed providers: disinfection and seed treatment.

Disadvantages and advantages of the two processes intersect rather well and they are very often associated. However, two major elements remain worrying.

1. The use of "chemical" products is increasingly regulated, and the permissible uses are increasingly reduced. In this area, anything that is not allowed is prohibited.

2. To make a seed perfectly "clean", the whole seed microbiota is set aside while it would have a beneficial action on its protection and perhaps on the bio-stimulation of the development of the seedling.

Seed producers, and more generally agriculture, need innovative products that combine efficiency and respect for human health and the environment. Bio-control of pathogens is being studied (plant extracts, bacteria, products derived from bacteria or yeasts ...); this is an essential solution for tomorrow. Genomic research on microflora associated with seeds should not be left out because of their "upstream" aspect. These two paths to explore are not only solutions for cleaner agriculture, they will bring about a necessary evolution. »



  • Phytopathogenic agents
  • Biological control
  • Microscopy
  • Microbiota
  • Metagenomics
  • Transcriptomic
  • Xanthomonas spp
  • Alternaria spp
  • Trichoderma spp

Who work on this topic at SFR Quasav (federative research Structure on Plant quality and health) ?

Emersys team
Emergence, systematics and ecology of plant pathogenic bacteria

FungiSem team
Seed-borne fungal pathogens 

ConserTo team
Conservation and Stress tolerance of seeds 

  • SONAS unit, Substances of Natural Origin and structural analogues


Technical platform Nucleic Analyses

Technical platform of Cell Imaging

Technical platform Phenotyping of
seeds and plants


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