Director of Micropropagation and Repository Unit
Department of Plant Pathology
3709 Hillsborough St.
Raleigh, NC 27607
Dr. Marilyn Daykin, Ag. Research Specialist
Rose Caldwell, Research Technician
Carol George, Research Assistant
Tamara Abernethy, Research Technician
B.S. Plant Protection, University of Belgrade, Serbia
M.S. Plant Pathology, University of Belgrade, Serbia
Ph.D. Plant Pathology, University of Alberta, Canada
Research Associate, Texas A&M University
Dr. Zvezdana Pesic-VanEsbroeck is the director of the Micropropagation and Repository Unit (MPRU) at N.C. State University. By using meristem tip culture, Dr. Pesic-VanEsbroeck and her staff generate nuclear stock plants that are pathogen tested and virus-indexed. The plants are enclosed in fine-mesh screened cages in the greenhouses which are kept locked for security. Currently, crops in the program include sweetpotato (table stock and ornamental), strawberry, blackberry, raspberry and blueberry.
The MPUR serves as a repository by maintaining more than 30 commercially grown strawberry varieties, in addition to advanced selections from the N.C. State strawberry breeding program. Propagation of nuclear stock is based primarily on custom orders for either tissue-culture or potted plants. It can take two to five months to produce nuclear stock plants, which cost in excess of $100 per plant. However, from that one true-to-type, healthy plant, a nursery should be able to produce 40,000 to 60,000 strawberry plants over three successive field generations.
Educated at the University of Belgrade and the University of Alberta, Dr. Pesic-VanEsbroeck specialized in plant virology and diseases that affect strawberries. She joined the Department of Plant Pathology at N.C. State University in 1996 and has led the efforts of the MPUR since 1998. She has been involved in developing and revising the operations manuals that guide the protocol and outline the proper procedures to ensure production of clean plant material.
Dr. Pesic-VanEsbroeck works with the North Carolina Strawberry Association by serving as an advisor to the board of directors and member of the Clean Plant Health Committee. She has given presentations to commodity groups and offers tours of the MPUR facility when the Strawberry Expo is held in the Triangle area.
PP 502 Plant Disease: Methods and Diagnosis, Guest Lectures
PP 590 Plant Pathology Field Course, Guest Lectures
HS 422 Small Fruit Production, Guest Lectures
Extension & Outreach
Strawberry Growers Information Portal http://ncsu.edu/enterprises/strawberries
Blueberry Growers Information Portal http://ncsu.edu/enterprises/blueberries
Blackberry and Raspberry Growers Information Portal http://ncsu.edu/enterprises/blackberries-raspberries
Kai-Shu, L., Jackson, D.M., Harrison, H., Simmons, A.M., and Pesic-VanEsbroeck, Z. 2010. Field evaluation of yield effects on the U.S.A. heirloom sweetpotato cultivars infected by Sweet potato leaf curl virus. Crop Protection 29:757-765.
Tzanetakis, I.E., Guzman-Baeny, T.L., Pesic-VanEsbroeck, Z., Fernandez, G.E., and Martin, R.R. 2009. First report of Impatiens necrotic spot virus in blackberry in the Southeastern United States. Plant Disease 93(4):432.
Yencho, G.C., Pecota, K.V., Schultheis, J.R., Pesic-VanEsbroeck, Z., Holmes, G.J., Little, B.E., Thornton, A.C., and Van-Den Truong. 2008. Covington Sweetpotato. HortScience 43(6):1911-1914.
Martin, R.R., Tzanetakis, I.E., Gergerich, R., Fernandez, G.E., and Pesic-VanEsbroeck, Z. 2004. Blackberry yellow vein associated virus: A new crinivirus found in blackberry. Acta Hort. 656:137-142.
Guner, N., Pesic-VanEsbroeck, Z., and Wehner, T. 2004. Inheritance of resistance to the watermelon strain of Papaya ringspot virus in watermelon. HortScience 39(4):811.
Bryan, A.D., Pesic-VanEsbroeck, Z., Schultheis, J.R., Pecota, K.V., Swallow, W.H., and Yencho, G.C. 2003. Cultivar decline in sweetpotato: I. Impact of micropropagation on yield, storage root quality, and virus incidence in ‘Beauregard’. J. Amer. Soc. Hort. Sci. 128(6):846-855.
Bryan, A.D., Schultheis, J.R., Pesic-VanEsbroeck, Z., and Yencho, G.C. 2003. Cultivar decline in sweetpotato: II. Impact of virus infection on yield and storage root quality in ‘Beauregard’ and ‘Hernandez’. J. Amer. Soc. Hort. Sci. 128(6):856-863.
Tzanetakis, I.E., Gergerich, R., Fernandez, G.E., Pesic, Z., and Martin, R.R. 2003. A crinivirus associated with a chlorotic line pattern in blackberry. Phytopathology 93:S85.
Guner, N., Strange, E.B., Wehner, T., and Pesic-VanEsbroeck, Z. 2002. Methods for screening watermelon for resistance to Papaya ringspot virus type-W. Scientia Horticulturae 94:297-307.
Guner, N., Strange, E.B., Wehner, T., and Pesic-VanEsbroeck, Z. 2002. Screening the watermelon germplasm collection for resistance to Papaya ringspot virus type-W. Crop Science 42:1324-1330.
Ferguson, L.M., Louws, F.J., Fernandez, G.E., Sanders, D.C., Monks, D.W., Pesic-VanEsbroeck, Z., Poling, E.B., Brannen, P.M., Smith, J.P., Safely, C.D., and Sydorovych, O.B. 2002. Management of soilborne pests in strawberry and vegetable plasticulture systems. Phytopathology 92:S25.
Harris, K.F., Pesic-vanEsbroeck, Z., and Duffus, J.E. 1996. Morphology of the sweetpotato whitefly, Bemisia tabaci (Homoptera, Aleyrodidae) relative to virus transmission. Zoomorphology 116:143-156.
Harris, K.F., Pesic-VanEsbroeck, Z., and Duffus, J.E. 1995. Anatomy of a virus vector. Bemisia 1995:Taxonomy, Biology, Damage Control and Management 289-318.
Harris, K.F., Pesic-vanEsbroeck, Z., and Duffus, J.E. 1995. Moderate-temperature polymerization of LR White in a nitrogen atmosphere. Micros. Res. Techn. 32:264-265.
Harris, K.F., Pesic-VanEsbroeck, Z., and Duffus, J.E. 1994. A morphological study of Bemisia organ systems of known importance in homoptera virus transmission. Phytoparasitica 22:323-324.
Pesic-VanEsbroeck, Z., and Hiruki, C. 1990. Hypersensitive reaction in alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.) induced by Alfalfa mosaic virus. Plant Pathology 39:524-529.
Pesic, Z., and Hiruki, C. 1988. Comparison of ELISA and dot hybridization for detection of Alfalfa mosaic virus in alfalfa pollen. Can. J. Plant Pathol. 10:116-122.
Pesic, Z., and Hiruki, C., and Chen.M.H. 1988. Detection of viral antigen by immunogold cytochemistry in ovules, pollen and anthers of alfalfa infected with Alfalfa mosaic virus. Phytopathology 78:1027-1032.
Pesic, Z., and Hiruki, C. 1988. Effect of Alfalfa mosaic virus on germination and tube growth of alfalfa pollen. Can. J. Plant Pathol. 10:6-10.
Pesic, Z., and Hiruki, C. 1986. Different rates of Alfalfa mosaic virus incidence in seed coat and embryo of alfalfa seed. Can. J. Plant Pathol. 8-39-42.
Milholland, R.D., and Averre, C.W. (Eds.). Ballington, J.R., Daykin, M.E., Bowman, D.T., Louws, F.J., Pesic-VanEsbroeck, Z., and Sorensen, K.A. 2008. Strawberry Operations Manual for the Production of Micropropagated-Certified Planting Stock. 4th Ed. Department of Plant Pathology, NC State University, Raleigh, NC 27696-7616. 81 pp.
Milholland, R.D., and Averre, C.W. (Eds.). Pesic-VanEsbroeck, Z., Daykin, M.E., Jester, W.R., Schultheis, J.R., Sorensen, K.A., and Bowman, D.T. 2008. Sweetpotato Operations Manual for the Production of Micropropagated-Certified Planting Stock. 2nd Ed. Department of Plant Pathology, NC State University, Raleigh, NC 27695-7616. 62 pp.