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Delivery of a pest and disease diagnostic step change for the sugarcane industry (RSD-LAMP)

Ratoon Stunting Disease (RSD) is severely affecting sugarcane yield and profitability across Australia causing losses of over 30% in yields in some regions. To date, timely and accurate detection of RSD remains elusive due to lack of highly sensitive and specific detection methods that are fast, robust and user friendly.

The technology developed in this project aims to address this problem within the Australian sugar industry whilst modernising the current point-of-care diagnostic methods available, ensuring the delivery of reliable results in resource poor settings. Previously developed and trialled with SRA, our approach combines the use of novel “dip-stick” technology to capture pathogen DNA from first expressed sugarcane juice with rapid DNA amplification at the mill.

The project will also expand the use of the technology to detect other pathogen threats, both endemic and exotic. In the event of an unforeseen incursion, the newly developed technologies will allow to deploy diagnostic kits and protocols to the industry in a fast and efficient manner.

Project date

1 Jul 2023-30 Jun 2027
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Principal investigator

Jimmy Botella

Project funded by


Sugar Research Australia (SRA)

SRA invests in and manages a portfolio of research, development and adoption projects that drive productivity, profitability and sustainability for …
  • Location


  • Organisation type

    Research funding body, Research service providers


MSF Sugar Pty Ltd
Tully Cane Productivity Service Ltd.
Indonesia Sugar Institute
Tully Sugar Ltd

Focus areas


Technology areas

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