Database Research Summaries
Control of Soybean Diseases

calendar_today Year of Research: 2017
update Posted On: 05/23/2019
group Dr. Berlin D. Nelson Jr. (Principal Investigator, North Dakota State University); Cooperator: Dr. Ted Helms (North Dakota State University)
bookmark North Dakota Soybean Council

Research Focus

Seedling and root diseases are the most common disease problems in North Dakota. That is why the focus of this project is to incorporate resistance to harmful diseases into public soybean cultivars and germplasm; and investigate changes in pathogen populations that would affect soybean production and identify virulent strains of pathogens.


  • Incorporate resistance to harmful diseases into public soybean cultivars and germplasm.
  • Understand changes in pathogen populations that will impact disease control, as well as look for new diseases that could threaten soybean production.
  • Discover the cause of late season death in soybean.


  1. In 2016-2017, there were 68 breeding lines screened for resistance to races 3 or 4 and over 40% were deemed resistant.
  2. The ND Bison conventional soybean variety was released in 2016 and tested for SCN resistance. Results concluded that the soybean had a moderate level of resistance to SCN HG type 0.
  3. Researchers collected seed from 80 separate Bison plants and grew one seed from each of the 80 plants and screened each individual plant for SCN resistance. Of those 80 plants, 17 seed sources were identified to have greater resistance than the bulk seed of the Bison. The 17 sources are now being tested a second time and the results will be used to improve resistance in the breeding lines.
  4. The study looking for new races of P. sojae showed there are strains of the pathogen that can attack resistance genes. There were 47 isolates evaluated for virulence on common resistance genes: Rps 1c, Rps 1k and Rps 6. Results showed 57% of the isolates were virulent on Rps 1c, 45% virulent on Rps 1km and 4% on Rps 6.
  5. The high percentage virulent of Rps 1k is concerning because it is the most common resistance gene used in the particular tested area. In the future, other new genes or gene stacking will be needed to control this disease in particular fields.


  • This information will help growers manage important diseases.
  • Growers now know how these diseases will affect their crop.

For more information about this research project, please visit the National Soybean Checkoff Research Database.

Funded in part by the soybean checkoff.