Location: BARC-East, Bldg. 580, Powder Mill Rd., Beltsville, MD
Phone: (301) 313-9200
Fax: (301) 313-9232
The CPHST Beltsville Laboratory mission is to develop, adapt, validate, and implement advanced biochemical and molecular methods for the detection of high consequence plant pathogens, including the APHIS Select Agents and plant pathogens in foreign germplasm. The CPHST Beltsville Laboratory is committed to quality in biochemical and molecular diagnostics and is the only Federal Plant Pathology ISO/IEC 17025:2005 accredited laboratory that conducts operational diagnostics for plant pathogens of regulatory concern. The laboratory routinely tests for Citrus Huanglongbing (HLB) aka Citrus Greening, Phytophthora ramorum, Plum Pox virus and Citrus Canker (Xanthomonas axonopodis pv. citri); molecular confirmation/identification of other plant pathogens of concern is also conducted.
Laboratory programs use cutting-edge technologies from the fields of plant pathology, molecular biology, human and animal clinical diagnostics, and bio-detection to develop, adapt, and improve methods for accurate and rapid diagnosis of plant pathogens. The laboratory uses these methods to diagnose and differentiate high consequence and select agent plant pathogens that require federal confirmation. The Beltsville Laboratory strives to achieve timely transfer of diagnostic tools that are field deployable for PPQ emergency response and eradication programs, as well as the Cooperative Agricultural Pest Survey (CAPS) program. Tools are deployed to stakeholders through clear-written standard operating procedures and hands-on laboratory training for end users within and outside of PPQ.
The laboratory is also a key component of the PPQ National Plant Protection Laboratory Accreditation Program (NPPLAP). Beltsville Laboratory is responsible for proficiency test panel development, validation, and delivery to laboratories who perform diagnostics on behalf of PPQ using CPHST-validated methods. The laboratory is also provider of validated diagnostic controls to the National Plant Diagnostic Network (NPDN). Beltsville staff routinely conducts outreach to the plant pathology diagnostic community by providing technical support to scientists within the NPDN, PPQ port and regional identifiers, and state departments of agriculture in the detection of regulatory plant pathogens by providing protocols, hands-on laboratory training, and troubleshooting for PPQ validated diagnostics. Beltsville scientists also contribute their expertise by serving as members of scientific groups and committees.
Provided hands-on diagnostic methods training for 74 diagnosticians from the NPDN, State Departments of Agriculture, and Universities. Seven workshops with 11 instructors provided training on: Bioinformatics of Plant Pathogens and Molecular diagnostics for Phytophthora ramorum, Phytophthora kernoviae, Plum pox virus, HLB, and Phytoplasma.
High Throughput Sequencing Technologies