No. 6 Article 1/April 30, 2004

Plant Clinic Opening/Changes

The University of Illinois Plant Clinic will open this year on May 3. Many changes have been made over the past winter, including the use of new regional software requiring data reporting on a national level. Some new equipment has been purchased, and the clinic has been gearing up to handle a few new or potential pathogens in Illinois, including the possibility of soybean rust and sudden oak death coming to our state. Already this past winter the clinic was involved with an outbreak of Ralstonia on greenhouse geranium production (also a threat to potatoes).

The Plant Clinic, part of the National Plant Diagnostic Network (www., will have news to report on pest outbreaks as the season progresses. This network will aid in rapid identification of insect, disease, and weed pests as they occur throughout the United States. It also provides our lab with links to diagnostic and regulatory labs throughout the country.

Fees have changed only slightly to accommodate the increased use of ELISA (enzyme linked immunosorbent assay) testing. In the past, some ELISA test kits were used at no additional cost to the consumer. This new fee will help us cover our costs but will affect only those requesting ELISA testing. Clinic fees for 2004 are as follow:

General diagnosis (including cultures)$12.50
SCN* or PWN*$18.75
ELISA tests*$25.00
Other nematodes (usually corn)$40.00

*SCN indicates the assay for soybean cyst nematode. PWN indicates pinewood nematode analysis. ELISA tests are specific serological tests. Call first if you are uncertain which tests are needed. The clinic telephone number is (217)333-0519. The mailing address is 1401 W. St. Mary's Rd., Urbana, IL 61801.

Payment must accompany the sample for diagnosis to be initiated. Make checks payable to the University of Illinois or to the Plant Clinic. Our Web site ( provides details on how to prepare and send samples; fees; location; and links to other resources.--Nancy Pataky

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