The Iowa Soybean Rust Fast Track System was developed to allow the rapid and accurate diagnosis of samples suspected of being infected with the Asian soybean rust fungus. Early symptoms of various infectious leaf diseases of soybean often appear similar. A positive identification may require incubation of leaf samples in a moist environment and subsequent microscopic examination.
Samples submitted to the Iowa State University Plant Disease Clinic through the Fast Track System are given priority status and diagnosed for Asian soybean rust free of charge. Details of the Fast Track System have been highlighted in past ICM Newsletters.
- Use the Soybean Rust Fast Track System  (2/28/05)
- Iowa Soybean Rust Fast Track System to be tested spring 2005  (4/11/2005)
In the Fast Track System, agricultural professionals who have received specialized training on the diagnosis of soybean rust serve as first detectors. Their role is to examine any soybean samples that show symptoms suggestive of rust. If Asian soybean rust cannot be ruled out, the samples are referred to specially trained Iowa State University Extension personnel (triage team). If a triage team member cannot rule out Asian soybean rust, the sample is delivered to the Iowa State University Plant Disease Clinic. During the 2005 season, four samples were referred to the Plant Disease Clinic for diagnosis. After laboratory analysis of the samples, Asian soybean rust was ruled out. The samples were not forwarded to the United States Department of Agricultures Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) laboratory.
The Soybean Rust Fast Track System will also be in place for the 2006 growing season. A list of first detectors can be obtained at county extension offices or found at soybeanrust.info . Additional information on submitting samples to the Plant Disease Clinic can be found here .
This article originally appeared on page 43 of the IC-496 (3) -- February 27, 2006 issue.