CPCNW Works to Integrate Therapies for Virus Elimination Improvements
Grapevines are one of the three crops serviced by the Clean Plant Center Northwest (CPCNW). Residing on the campus of the WSU Experimental Station in Prosser, Washington, CPCNW houses the second-largest foundation collection in the NCPN Grape network, and focuses on cultivars for colder, northern climates. The Center continually looks for opportunities to improve processes and produce cleaner grapevines. They recently sent their lab technicians for advanced training in virus elimination techniques at the USDA’s Agricultural Genetic Resources Preservation Research Unit (AGPRU) in Ft. Collins, Colorado.
The lab technicians received hands-on instruction in tissue culture techniques and cryotherapy. The latter is an exciting technology with the potential to increase success in removing recalcitrant pathogens. In the coming year, CPCNW will be implementing cryotherapy protocols toward the goal of more effective elimination with fewer rounds of meristem tissue culture than are currently required.
Training participants were also shown how to preserve tissue-cultured grapevine plantlets for long-term storage. This approach is widely used at the AGPRU and in some of the NCPN Berry Centers. Longer storage ensures a backup-of-last-resort for important germplasm which, when needed, is faster and more cost-effective than restarting the entire clean plant process from a potentially infected vine.