A new race of wheat stem rust (WSR), Puccinia graminis f.sp. tritici, was discovered in Uganda in 1999 and named Ug99. Two years later it was found in Kenya and then again in Ethiopia in 2003. The new race is affecting cultivars that have been resistant to WSR for the last forty years and there is concern that if it continues to spread it could impact wheat producers worldwide. WSR is a fungus that is spread by wind-borne spores or on the clothing of travelers. Research is underway to develop resistant varieties.
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ProMED--12 September 2005. Wheat stem rust, new strain – Uganda. Archive number 20050912.2698. Available online: www.promedmail.org