UC Riverside receives more than $4 million for avocado anti-fungus research

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RIVERSIDE (CNS) - UC Riverside received more than $4 million in federal funds to research methods of shielding avocados from a fungus that can be devastating to crops in California and elsewhere, it was announced Thursday, Dec. 10. The U.S. Department of Agriculture awarded the university a $4.4 million grant as part of its National Institute of Food & Agriculture Specialty Crop Research Initiative, with the goal of promoting development of next-generation methods of protecting orchards from Laurel Wilt, a fungus introduced by the non-native redbay ambrosia beetle. ``When the beetle attacks, the fungus enters and colonizes the tree's vascular system, and within weeks, the tree wilts and dies if not managed properly,'' said Patricia Manosalva, director of UCR's Avocado Rootstock Breed
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