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The CLEARFIELD CONFIRM℠ test is a herbicide tolerance analysis customized for wheat and lentil varieties that carry the CLEARFIELD™ trait. BioVision Seed Labs was the first Canadian laboratory to implement the BASF protocol, in which kernels are evaluated for tolerance after prescribed growing conditions.
CDC Triffid GMO Test for Flax
CDC Triffid is a genetically modified flax variety. It was developed in the 1990s for tolerance to herbicide residues in soil, and approved, but deregistered in 2001 without being commercialized. Canada’s flax industry successfully lobbied for deregistration due to fear of losing their export markets in Europe and other GM-shy markets. BioVision has been validated by the Canadian Grain Commission to offer the test and we conform to the new, more stringent protocols set by the Flax Council of Canada in 2010. In a two kilogram (4.4lbs) sample, four random, representative subsamples are each individually tested for the presence of CDC Triffid DNA.
Blackleg in Canola
Blackleg is a highly destructive disease of canola and mustard crops (Brassica spp.) caused by the fungus Leptosphaeria maculans (Phoma lingam). This disease is also referred to as phoma, dry rot or stem canker and is capable of causing seedling blight. Originally, it was thought that Phoma lingam had a weakly virulent (avirulent) strain and a highly or severely virulent (virulent) strain. It was later identified that the avirulent strain was a separate, but related, fungus called Leptosphaeria biglobosa. Here in our lab, our trained technicians perform a blackleg initial scan to identify Leptosphaeria spp. infected Brassica seeds and then perform a virulence test to differentiate the two species.
Cochliobolus sativus in Cereals
Cochliobolus sativus (Bipolaris sorokiniana), the cause of common root rot and seedling blight, can decrease crop yield, especially in barley fields. It is also the cause of one of the most common foliar diseases in cereals, spot blotch. This disease can also contribute to dark seed discolouration (termed black point or smudge, also caused by other factors).
Fusarium graminearum in Cereals
Fusarium graminearum is the cause of scab or Fusarium head blight. This disease can cause significant yield loss with notably thinner, smaller, bleached kernels called FDK (Fusarium damaged kernels). The production of mycotoxins, most notably vomitoxin (deoxynivalenol), will negatively affect milling, malting and feed quality. Other Fusarium spp. may also produce different mycotoxins, so you may want to look into getting the Fusarium spp. Identification test if this is a concern for you.
True Loose Smut in Barley
True Loose Smut in barley can be a serious disease, especially when rotations are limited between barley crops. This disease is regulated under the Grade Tables, with the maximum tolerance of 2% for Certified (untreated) barley seed. True Loose Smut can also be found in wheat, but this is rare. Since this disease infects the embryo, the barley hull is removed, the embryo is stained blue, then microscopic analysis proceeds. This image shows hundreds of stained embryos.
BioVision's Fungal Scan for Diseases in Cereals
For the grower who wants a more complete picture of what else they are growing along with their crops, BioVision presents the Fungal Scan for all diseases. This is a quantitative analysis of the diseases present within cereal crops. Fungi identified are: Alternaria spp. (cause of black or sooty mould, which stains seed kernels a darker colour); Aspergillus spp. (commonly considered a storage fungi, commercially important for its production of mycotoxins, specifically aflatoxin and ochratoxin); Cladosporium spp. (influences grading, as this is the common cause of mildew); Cochliobolus spp. (common root rot and spot blotch are caused by this pathogen); Drechslera spp. (also called Pyrenophora spp., this disease manifests as net blotch in the field, another common foliar disease); Epicoccum spp. (common cause of pink or red kernel staining); Septoria spp. (also called Stagnospora spp., this commonly causes leaf blotch); and Fusarium spp. (a comprehensive identification of Fusarium avenaceum, Fusarium culmorum, Fusarium graminearum, Fusarium poae and Fusarium sporotrichioides).
Ascochyta in Peas
Ascochyta blight in field peas is a destructive disease that invades the plant at any time in the growing season and causes lesions on the stem, leaves and pods. Severe infection results in seed yield loss, as well as discolored and small kernels. This disease flourishes when a thick canopy cover is combined with prolonged moist conditions. The presence and infection level of Ascochyta in peas can be determined by commercial seed testing laboratories with pathology expertise and controlled incubation chambers.
Botrytis in Lentils
Grey mould, also known as Botrytis stem and pod rot, is a highly visible disease caused by Botrytis cinerea. Symptoms usually don’t appear until late flowering and the disease is most common under humid conditions. Infected plants will bleach and become covered in a gray, mouldy growth. They will also produce fewer, shriveled and discoloured seeds. Occurs most often in pulse crops.
Grain Grading Analysis
Grain grading services involve both analyst and instrumentation analysis. Incoming samples are processed through a Carter Day Dockage tester to pre-clean the sample and divide it into subsamples for further analysis, such as dockage. Samples then proceed to equipment for moisture and protein analysis, then to the workbench for grading.
Dormancy in Cereals
The key indicator of dormancy in cereal seed is the presence of "fresh seeds", which are kernels that visually appear healthy and imbibe water during a germination test, but fail to sprout. Breaking dormancy in the laboratory can be assisted by pre-chilling the planted seed for 3-5 days and prescribing a growth promoter called potassium nitrate (KNO3) to the water substrate. This approved method attempts to facilitate enzyme activity, as it is thought that dormancy is a function of inhibitor presence.

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