Early detection of fungal pathogen presence in the field would help to better time or avoid some of the fungicide treatments used to prevent crop production losses. We recently introduced a new phytoalexin-based method for a non-invasive detection of crop diseases using their fluorescence. The causal agent of grapevine downy mildew, Plasmopara viticola, induces the synthesis of stilbenoid phytoalexins by the host, Vitis vinifera, early upon infection. These stilbenoids emit violet-blue fluorescence under UV light. A hand-held solid-state UV-LED-based field fluorimeter, named Multiplex 330, was used to measure stilbenoid phytoalexins in a vineyard. It allowed us to non-destructively detect and monitor the naturally occurring downy mildew infections on leaves in the field.
- This article is part of the themed collection: The 16th International Congress on Photobiology