Credits: 2

Terms Offered: Spring

Instructor: Anton Baudoin

Prerequisites: None

The study of plant disease in populations, of environmental factors that influence the amount and distribution of disease in populations, and of rates of change in the amount of disease in time, in space, or both.

Course is primarily designed for plant pathology majors and those interested in in-depth study of epidemiology of plant diseases. It combines theory and practical aspects.

Taught upon demand. Last taught 2011

Lecture Topics

  1. Introduction; definition and scope of epidemiology, historical development; terminology
  2. Quantitative plant pathology: measurement of host, pathogen, environment, and disease
    • Pathogen monitoring
      • quantifying populations of propagules
      • sampling of soil, leaves, etc.; assay
      • air sampling for spores
    • Host monitoring
      • biomass and leaf area
      • developmental stages
    • Disease measurement
  3. Models in epidemiology, types and use
  4. Growth curves, "Vanderplankian" and related models:
  5. Derivation of simple exponential and logistic models
    • Refinements by adding latent and infectious period
    • Monocyclic disease -- monomolecular model
    • Other growth curves; Gompertz, Richards, etc.
    • Implications of models for designing disease control strategies
  6. Multiple regression models; Integration of factors affecting disease severity
  7. Simulation models and systems analysis; implication for design of disease control strategies
  8. All the little pieces: epidemiological processes; effects of the abiotic environment on epidemics and their components; microclimate.
  9. Effects of temperature, radiation, moisture, and wind. Environmental monitoring -- temperature, humidity, rain, leaf wetness, radiation, etc.
  10. Forecasting of disease
  11. Dispersal: take-off, transport, deposition. Air sampling, spore traps
  12. Disease gradients, their study and interpretation
  13. Inoculum potential/disease incidence relationships
  14. Effect of host spacing and host mixtures; disease development in natural communities
  15. Use of epidemiology in the analysis of host resistance to disease
  16. Crop loss assessment; yield loss models; techniques in crop loss assessment research


  • Madden, L. V., G. Hughes, and F. van den Bosch. 2007. The Study of Plant Disease Epidemics. APS Press, St. Paul, MN.

May also be useful:

  • Campbell, C. L. and L. V. Madden 1990. Introduction to Plant Disease Epidemiology. John Wiley & Sons, New York, NY. 532 pp.
  • Zadoks, J. C. & R. D. Schein 1979. Epidemiology and Plant Disease Management. Oxford University Press. 427 pp.