sudden oak death

The fungus Phytophtora ramorum causes sudden oak death, which attacks oak trees in coastal California counties from Monterey to Humboldt. Scientists think P. ramorum alights onto oak trunks from nearby bay leaves when it rains, and uses natural cuts in the bark to infect bark tissues, and then kill cells by blocking water and nutrient transport vessels. (Photo: Nicholls H: Stopping the Rot. PLoS Biol 2/7/2004: e213.

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