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Project 2

Project 2: Nanosensor for early detection of Ganoderma Boninense and soil quality for control of the related disease

Ganoderma boninense causes both basal stem rot (BSR) and upper stem rot (USR).  The diseases remain South East Asia’s most devastating oil palm diseases with direct loss of the stand, reduced yield and the resultant requirement for earlier replanting. Once infected young palms will usually die within 1 or 2 years, while mature trees may survive for slightly longer. Although it has been clearly identified as the main cause of the disease in oil palms, strategies for the early detection and control of G. boninense are still immature.  This project proposes to provide a possible solution through the use of nanotechnology for the effective and efficient detection and control of the pathogen. 

Nanosensors could help in detection of G. boninense and the efficient use of nutrients and chemicals through precision farming. Through the use of nanomaterials and internet of things, farm managers could remotely detect plant pathogen. Once pathogen is detected, there would be automatic adjustment of pesticide or fertilizers application.


Prof. Dr Nor Azah Yusof
Functional Devices Laboratory (FDL),
Institute of Advanced Technology (ITMA),
Universiti Putra Malaysia, Serdang

We will focus on study of specific markers for detection of G. boninense based on secondary metabolites, elicitors and protein express upon infection. The interaction of the biomarker with different transducer (optical/electrochemical) will be optimized for the best signal transduction. Then the focus will be on the usage of nanomaterial (graphene) in development of smart detection system (device embedded in tree roots, soil and trunk) based on the best transduction system. 


  • To study the specific marker for early detection of G. boninense based on secondary metabolites (phytoalexins), elicitors and protein
  • To study the interaction of the biomarker with different transducer for optimized signal
  • To develop detection system for detection of G. boninense based on the best transducer
  • To developed the prototype of the sensor with wireless system
  • To evaluate the feasibility of the developed sensor system for actual application in actual plantation

Expected Output

  • New biomarker or early detection of g.boninense, optimized new nanosensor for early detection of g.boninense
  • It has been reported that the economic loss caused by fungi is between RM225 million to RM1.5 billion (up to 500 million USD) a year for the whole South East Asia. It is projected with the smart farming system proposed, the problem could be reduced to 50% and will reduce the economic loss


Prof. Dr. Khozirah Shaari
 Prof. Datin Dr. Siti Nor Akmar Abdullah
 Assoc. Prof. Dr. Mohd. Nizar Hamidon
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Zurina Zainal Abidin
 Assoc. Prof. Dr. Wong Mui Yun
 Dr. Nor Azowa Ibrahim
Dr. Jaafar Abdullah
 Dr. Mohammad Amran Mohd Salleh
 Dr. Nurulhaidah Daud
Nor Humaira Bt Md Salleh
 Rosiah Osman
 Prof Mehmet Ertugrul
Department of Nanoscience and Nanoengineering
Atatürk University









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