Pest categorisation of Xiphinema americanum sensu lato

European Union, pest risk, plant health, plant pest, quarantine, dagger nematode, virus vector
First published in the EFSA Journal
6 July 2018
16 May 2018
Scientific Opinion


The Panel on Plant Health performed a pest categorisation of Xiphinema americanumsensu lato (Nematoda: Longidoridae) for the EU. Sixty‐one species in this group are recognised. They are polyphagous pests found in soil associated with a number of plant species. As a migratory ectoparasitic species, it punctures cells of plant roots. Nematodes were classified in four categories based on their distribution and ability to transmit viruses. Category I contains the seven virus vector species present outside the EU:X. americanum sensu stricto, X. bricolense, X. californicum, X. inaequale, X. intermedium, X. rivesi (non‐EU populations) and X. tarjanense. Category II contains the 28 species not present in the EU and not known to transmit any virus. Twenty‐six species are present in the EU and are not known to be virus vectors (category III). Category IV contains the species present in the EU, which is a virus vector (EU populations of X. rivesi). All nematodes known to be virus vectors occurring outside the EU (category I) satisfy all the criteria that are within the remit of EFSA to assess to be regarded as Union quarantine pests. This is mainly due to their association with non‐EU virus isolates. Categories II and III contain species that are not reported to transmit viruses or cause economic damage to crop plants. Although uncertainty concerning their ability to transmit viruses exists, those species do not satisfy all the criteria to be regarded as Union quarantine pests. Category IV contains the EU populations of X. rivesi. The species is a virus vector but current EU populations of X. rivesi have not been reported to be associated with any of the EU viruses or their non‐EU isolates under field conditions. Xiphinema rivesi (EU populations) is widespread in some Member States and does not satisfy all the criteria to be regarded as a Union quarantine. None of the species can be regarded as a regulated non‐quarantine pest.

Panel members at the time of adoption

Claude Bragard, David Caffier, Thierry Candresse, Elisavet Chatzivassiliou, Katharina Dehnen‐Schmutz, Gianni Gilioli, Jean‐Claude Grégoire, Josep Anton Jaques Miret, Michael Jeger, Alan MacLeod, Maria Navajas Navarro, Björn Niere, Stephen Parnell, Roel Potting, Trond Rafoss, Vittorio Rossi, Gregor Urek, Ariena Van Bruggen, Wopke Van der Werf, Jonathan West and Stephan Winter.
Panel on Plant Health
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EFSA Journal 2018;16(7):5298
Question Number
On request from
European Commission