Plant parasitic nematodes are a source of considerable economic loss to arable farmers. However, the cost of nematode control is also escalating, both in financial and environmental terms. Nevertheless, there are alternative methods of control in current use. As Tom Powers emphasizes in this article, to be effective, crop rotation and the use of resistant strains of host plant need to be accompanied by sensitive methods for parasite strain identification. Morphologically, there is little by which to separate nematode pothotypes and consequently technologies are being introduced to tackle these problems at the level of their genes.
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