Covering Louisiana

Apr 3, 2014 6:50 AM by AP

LSU plant pathologist honored by national group

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - A plant pathologist at the LSU AgCenter has been honored for his contributions to managing major sweet potato diseases.

The AgCenter says the American Phytopathological (FIE-toh-PATH-uh-LAHJ-uh-kuhl) Society elected Chris Clark a fellow of the society.

Clark was among AgCenter scientists who developed the popular Beauregard sweet potato - the first variety resistant to a bacterial disease called Streptomyces (strep-toh-MIE-seez) soil rot.

He says viruses, which tend to accumulate in planting material, also limit sweet potato production. His research on viruses led to a virus-tested seed program. It produces clean plants from infected plants, then uses those plants to produce clean seed, which is then sold to growers.

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