Detection of diseased plants by analysis of volatile organic compound emission

R.M.C. Jansen, J. Wildt, I.F. Kappers, H.J. Bouwmeester, J.W. Hofstee, E. van Henten

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

94 Citations (Scopus)


This review focuses on the detection of diseased plants by analysis of volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions. It includes an overview of studies that report on the impact of infectious and noninfectious diseases on these emissions and discusses the specificity of disease-induced emissions. The review also provides an overview of processes that affect the gas balance of plant volatiles, including their loss processes. These processes are considered as important because they contribute to the time-dynamic concentration profiles of plant-emitted volatiles. In addition, we describe the most popular techniques currently in use to measure volatiles emitted from plants, with emphasis on agricultural application. Dynamic sampling coupled with gas chromatography and followed by an appropriate detector is considered as the most appropriate method for application in agriculture. It is recommended to evaluate the state-of-the-art in the fields concerned with this method and to explore the development of a new instrument based on the specific needs for application in agricultural practice. However, to apply such an instrument in agriculture remains a challenge, mainly due to high costs
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)157-174
JournalAnnual Review of Phytopathology
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • chromatography-mass-spectrometry
  • precision agriculture
  • methyl salicylate
  • tomato plants
  • biosensor technology
  • rapid-determination
  • thermal-desorption
  • gas-chromatograph
  • emitted volatiles
  • botrytis-cinerea


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