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Plant pathologists (phytopathologists) are concerned with plant health and the cause, management and treatment of plant disease. To accomplish this they must have a deep understanding of plant structure as well as the causative agents of plant diseases. Plant diseases are caused by a variety of agents including infective fungi, bacteria, viruses, nematodes, protozoan and parasitic plants. Environmental factors such as pollution and nutrient imbalances can also cause plant disease.

Diagnosing the cause of plant diseases can be a challenge. Often, the most obvious symptoms are exhibited in plant structures/tissues/organs supported by those that are directly impacted by the disease. While some diseases can directly impact a plant's ability to conduct photosynthesis, it is such a fundamental aspect of a plant's biology, most diseases—even those that don't directly affect the structures/tissues involved with this complex metabolic pathway—impact it on some level. Determining the tissues/structures/organs of the plant that are directly affected by disease is the initial, critical step in treating/managing plant disease.

Several native plants have been lost or are threatened by plant disease. The American chestnut (Castanea dentata) for example, once the dominant tree of the forests in the eastern United States, has effectively been lost due to the 'chestnut blight' fungus (Cryphonectria parasitica). The parasitic fungus enters through the tree's bark and then destroys the tree's ability to transport sugars made through photosynthesis throughout the plant. The species now consists of a few isolated specimens largely in the southeast, and in the form of 'stump sprouts' that emerge from the remnants of affected trees. The sprouts typically die within 15 years of emergence.
The 'chestnut blight' directly affects which structure/tissue in the American chestnut tree?
A. roots
B. leaves
C. phloem
D. flowers
E. fruit
Plant pathologists (phytopathologists) are concerned with plant health and the cause, management and treatment of plant disease. To accomplish this they must have a deep understanding of plant structure as well as the causative agents of plant diseases. Plant diseases are caused by a variety of agents including infective fungi, bacteria, viruses, nematodes, protozoan and parasitic plants. Environmental factors such as pollution and nutrient imbalances can also cause plant disease.

Diagnosing the cause of plant diseases can be a challenge. Often, the most obvious symptoms are exhibited in plant structures/tissues/organs supported by those that are directly impacted by the disease. While some diseases can directly impact a plant's ability to conduct photosynthesis, it is such a fundamental aspect of a plant's biology, most diseases—even those that don't directly affect the structures/tissues involved with this complex metabolic pathway—impact it on some level. Determining the tissues/structures/organs of the plant that are directly affected by disease is the initial, critical step in treating/managing plant disease.

Several native plants have been lost or are threatened by plant disease. The American chestnut (Castanea dentata) for example, once the dominant tree of the forests in the eastern United States, has effectively been lost due to the 'chestnut blight' fungus (Cryphonectria parasitica). The parasitic fungus enters through the tree's bark and then destroys the tree's ability to transport sugars made through photosynthesis throughout the plant. The species now consists of a few isolated specimens largely in the southeast, and in the form of 'stump sprouts' that emerge from the remnants of affected trees. The sprouts typically die within 15 years of emergence.

A plant disease that damages a plant's pericycle would directly impact the plant's ability

A. to produce flowers
B. to develop roots
C. to transport sugars throughout the plant
D. produce fruit
E. carry out respiration