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FR_POnTE_Logo.jpgThis multi-partner EU project is exploring the genetics, biology, epidemiology, vector ecology and economic impacts of four pathosystems that threatens strategic crops and forestry in the EU. These are: Xylella fastidiosa, Candidatus ‘Liberibacter solanacearum’, Hymenoscyphus fraxineus and new and exotic Phytophthora species.

Research objectives

This project is aimed at understanding and minimizing the risk of introduction and impact of major crop and tree pathogens that threaten Europe.

Specific objectives include:

  • Anticipate and prevent the entry of new pests through improved surveillance and early detection tools (diagnostic kits, lab-on-chip, new biomarkers).
  • Mitigate the spread of introduced pests and reducing socio-economic impacts.
  • Develop sustainable solutions for outcome-based interventions.

Forest Research is involved in the part of the project related to emerging diseases of forests, with a focus on Hymenoscyphus fraxineus (ash dieback} and new and exotic Phytophthora species.

Results so far

A technical workshop on ‘Emerging diseases of forest’ was held at University of Belgrade (Faculty of Forestry and Faculty of Agriculture) in Serbia on the 28th of September 2016. Researchers from Italy, Serbia, Sweden and UK gave presentations on a general overview of Horizon 2020-POnTE project, followed by specific talks on Xylella fastidiosa on forest trees and ornamentals, Hymenoscyphus fraxineus in Europe, the recently first detection of H. fraxineus in Serbia, Phytophthora spp. around the world and in forest ecosystems in Serbia.

A 3-day event (13-15 September 2016) was organised by Forest Research (FR) and SASA (Science and Advice for Scottish Agriculture) as part of their participation in the Horizon 2020 POnTE (Pest Organisms threatening Europe) and Euphresco projects. The event was funded by DEFRA and was hosted by SASA at their base near Edinburgh, Scotland.

Read the workshop summary


POnTE started the 1st of November 2015 and will run for 48 months.


Ana Perez-Sierra

Funders and partners

This project is funded jointly through Horizon 2020 and the Forestry Commission as part of Forest Research on Understanding Threats to Resilience

International Partners that make up the POnTE Consortium are

  1. CNR, Italian National Research Council, Italy
  2. UNIBA, University of Bari Aldo Moro, BARI, Italy
  3. INRA, National Institute for Agricultural Research, France
  4. ANSES, Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health & Safety, France
  5. IVIA, Valencian Institute for Agricultural Research, Spain
  6. CSIC, Spanish National Research Council, Spain
  7. SG SASA, Scottish Government Science & Advice for Scottish Agriculture, UK
  8. Forest Research, UK
  9. BFW, Federal Research & Training Centre for Forests, Natural Hazards & Landscape, Austria
  10. LUKE, Natural Resources Institute, Finland
  11. WU, Wageningen University, The Netherlands
  12. NIBIO, Norwegian Institute of Bioeconomy Research, Norway
  13. UCR, University of Costa Rica
  14. ARO, Agricultural Research Organization of Israel, The Volcani, Israel
  15. UB, University of Belgrade, Serbia
  16. CERTIS Europe BV, The Netherlands
  17. Aurea Imaging BVBA, Belgium
  18. Vilmorin SA, France
  19. Loewe Biochemica GMBH, Germany
  20. Phytophthora Research & Consultancy, Germany
  21. Agritest SRL, Italy
  22. CIITOLIVA Foundation, Innovation & Technology Centre for Olive Farming & Olive Oli, Spain
  23. Agricultural Villena Cooperative, Spain

Forestry Commission policy

This research is in support government policies of sustainable forest management and are expressed in The UK Forestry Standard and its supporting series of Guidelines.

Further information

Relevant information about the project and the four pathosystems can be found at: It is part of European Commission, European Union Funding for Research and Innovation, Call (part) identifier H2020-SFS-2014-2, Topic SFS-03a-2014 Native and alien pests in agriculture and forestry

Related documents

Useful sites

Staff profile image of Ana Perez Sierra
Ana Perez-Sierra

Head of Tree Health Diagnostic and Advisory Service