In the pipeline: grapevine powdery mildew

Powdery mildew is the largest driver for pesticide use in viticulture.

Caused by Erysiphe necator, powdery mildew is the most common and destructive disease affecting grapes. Mostly observed on the upper surface of leaves as a dusty gray or white coating, the disease also strikes the lower surface, young stems, buds, flowers, canes, and fruit. Severely infected leaves may exhibit mottling or deformity, including leaf curling and withering. Infected fruit turn grayish-white first, then exhibit a brown, rusted appearance and may crack, shrivel, or drop from clusters.

In our first season of field trials, we were able to demonstrate disease control comparable to current leading chemical-control products. This was the first known test that exhibited in-field fungus control using dsRNA. 

Like our botrytis candidate’s timeline, we anticipate two to three more year of work developing our end-use candidate before pursuing regulatory approval, which would allow us to launch our first fungicides in 2026.