The International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) Technical Panel on Diagnostic Protocols (TPDP) met from 05 to 09 February 2018 at the European and Mediterranean Plant Protection Organization (EPPO) in Paris, France. The main objective of the meeting was to revise draft diagnostic protocols (DPs) in various stages of development, discuss several horizontal issues related to DPs and review the TPDP work programme with strategic discussions on the future of the IPPC DPs. The meeting was chaired by Ms Gèraldine Anthoine (France) and attended by all seven TPDP members (from Australia, Canada, China, France, New Zealand, the United States of America and the Caribbean Agricultural Health and Food Safety Agency (CAHFSA)). Additionally, the meeting had the participation of the TPDP Steward Ms Jane Chard, (United Kingdom), the Assistant Steward and co-author of the draft DP for Striga spp. Ms Jayani Wathukarage (Sri Lanka), the host and expert Ms Françoise Petter (EPPO), and representatives from the IPPC Secretariat.
The purpose of harmonized DPs is to support efficient phytosanitary measures in a wide range of circumstances and to enhance the mutual recognition of diagnostic results by NPPOs, which may also facilitate trade. Furthermore, these protocols aid the development of expertise and technical cooperation on a global scale.
The TPDP reviewed their work programme, now comprising 11 DPs, and discussed in-depth the following six draft DPs and responses to comments. These draft DPs were submitted for consultation in 2017: 1) Revision of DP 2: Plum pox virus (2016-007); 2) Xylella fastidiosa (2004-024); 3) Austropuccinia psidii (2006-018); 4) Bactrocera dorsalis complex (2006-026); 5) Conotrachelus nenuphar (2013-002); and 6) Ips spp. (2006-020). The TPDP also revised and made adjustments to two draft DPs in earlier stages of the standard setting process: 1) Striga spp. (2008-009) and 2) Begomoviruses transmitted by Bemisia tabaci (2006-023), and discussed a path forward for the development of the draft DP Candidatus liberibacter spp. on Citrus spp. (2004-010).
The TPDP noted the updates from relevant IPPC meetings and the outcome of the 2016 IRSS general survey regarding the level of implementation of DPs by IPPC contracting parties. The survey revealed a good level of implementation of the IPPC DPs that varied between 25 to 40% implementation. The TPDP noted that contracting parties still lack some capacity with technical staff and appropriate laboratories to fully implement the DPs. Furthermore, the TPDP noted that their previous discussions on the use of next generation sequencing (NGS) technologies on diagnostics for phytosanitary purposes were moving forward within the IPPC community and saw with great enthusiasm that this topic will be discussed at the next meeting of the Commission on Phytosanitary Measures (CPM-13).
The meeting report will be available shortly at the following link: https://www.ippc.int/en/core-activities/standards-setting/expert-drafting-groups/technical-panels/technical-panel-diagnostic-protocols/ The outcomes of the meeting and the TPDP work plan will be presented to the SC in May 2018.
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