Production and storage of nematodes
BIOCOMES focuses on a more cost-effective production of entomopathogenic nematodes. Currently high losses of infective juveniles occur during harvest from liquid culture and storage. Therefore, new large-scale downstream processing will be developed. Furthermore, storage and formulation technologies will be improved aiming at an improved shelf life and stable virulence of these biological control agents.
Besides technical improvements of the downstream and storage process, shelf life of the nematodes will be also improved by genetic selection approaches. These approaches may also lead to an improved persistence of these beneficial organisms in the soil. Furthermore, a first attempt will be set up to improve the virulence of an entomopathogenic nematode against an important insect pest, the western corn root borer. All these efforst are aimed at the reduction of production costs and the development of nematode-based products for large scale open-field markets in agriculture and forestry at competitive costs compared to chemical compounds.
Current stage of the Biological Control Agent
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The gypsy moth (Lymantria dispar) is one of the insect species which causes significant economic damage to forests and orchards. It is a polyphagous insect that feeds on hundreds species of trees,...
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