Plant health: Francis Chaboussou's Research F2
Centre Ecologique Europeen Terre Vivante, Domaine de Raud, BP 20, F - 38710 Mens, France
|The studies made by Francis Chaboussou (died in
1985), researcher for INRA (Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique) from 1933 to
1976, made a key contribution to the understanding of the relationship between soil and
plant health. Francis Chaboussou identified an essential mechanism that he named
trophobiosis. According to this concept, plant susceptibility to pest or disease attack
and the level of proliferation or development are directly related to the biochemical
state of the plant. Pests and diseases develop actually only when the plant biochemical
state offers the required nutritional needs. Several experiences carried out by Francis
Chaboussou and other researchers have further confirmed this concept. In fact, it seems
that soluble substances - amino-acids and carbohydrates reducers - present in the plant
tissues stimulate pest and disease development. Tissue content of these substances,
however, is closely linked to the proteolysis/proteosynthesis balance. When this balance
moves towards a decrease of the proteosynthesis, the quantities of soluble substances
increases, as well as parasits attacks. The proteosynthesis is affected by different
elements, particularly by: 1/ Soil deficiency in trace-elements and nitrogen excess, due
to an imbalanced fertilisation. 2/ use of pesticides that can act either directly by a
proteosynthesis inhibition on the plant, or indirectly through an alteration of soil
balance. Through these studies, we are now able to analyse the multiplication of attacks
which so far could not be explained, and strengthen research on preventive action against
pests and diseases.
Chauboussou Francis (1980), Les plantes malades des pesticides, Ed. Debard, Paris.
Chauboussou Francis (1985), Sante des cultures, une revolution agronomique, Ed. Flammarion, Paris.