HYBRID EVENT: You can participate in person at Rome, Italy or Virtually from your home or work.
AGRI 2023

Charith Raj Adkar Purushothama

Charith Raj Adkar Purushothama, Speaker at Agriculture Conferences
University of Sherbrooke, Canada
Title : Strategies to manage hop latent viroid in the Cannabis industry


The term "viroid" describes the class of plant pathogenic non-coding RNA molecules similar to, but different from viruses. The hop latent viroid, first isolated from hops, is known to cause "duds" disease in cannabis plants. This disease is characterized by malformation of susceptible cultivars and severe yield loss. According to the survey conducted in 2021, more than 90% of tested cannabis-growing facilities in California were contaminated with HLVd. It has been estimated that it could cause losses of up to 4 billion US dollars annually for the cannabis industry in North America. Recent findings will be discussed related to disease management and crop protection strategies including on-site diagnosis methods for quick action plans.


Dr. Charith Raj Adkar Purushothama is an adjunct professor at Université de Sherbrooke and a biotech entrepreneur focusing on developing on-site diagnostic kits and novel crop protection strategies. He has helped several horticulture industries develop in-house plant disease diagnosis laboratories for biovigilance and mitigate pathogens through integrated pest management. He holds an M.S. degree in Microbiology and Ph.D. in Plant Virology. He is well-recognized in the field of Viroid and non-coding RNA biology. He has authored 60+ scientific reports and presented findings at more than 30 international conferences.

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