Whitefly update June 2015

Our overall objective is to develop a microbial biological control product based on the entomopathogenic fungus Isaria fumosorosea for the control of white fly in vegetables under different environmental conditions in the greenhouse and in the open field. In the first year of the BIOCOMES project we conducted several experiments and trials:

  • Researchers at the Julius Kuhn Institute (JKI) compared the potential of ten Isaria fumosorosea isolates of their collection with an available strain of Bayer CropScience Biologics (BCSB).
  • The researchers looked for the best growth temperature (5°C – 37°C) and humidity (50% – 99% rH) requirements by determining the germination and mycelia growth rate of fumosorosea. This research is needed to enable the production of the biocontrol product on a large scale and is ongoing.

In 2015:

  • JKI is going to perform trials under controlled laboratory conditions with the two most promising isolates to get to know more about the control efficacy of the strains against white fly.
  • Researchers of BCSB have been determining the potential of the Isaria fumosorosea isolates in terms of spore yield and maximum shelf life. Characterization and identification of host range aspects on fungal growth at different environmental conditions, sporulation in solid state fermenter systems and the biological efficacy against several pest insects and beneficial insects were compared for ten different Isaria fumosorosea
  • Based on these results two strains of JKI and the reference strain of BCSB fulfilled the criteria for next investigations. Some strains showed good efficacy against a range of pest insects but the conidia yield on solid substrates was not sufficient and vice versa. For some strains the standard processing protocol was not feasible.
  • Because the strain preferences for virulence and productivity did not correspond, strains were selected with acceptable virulence and yield. The development of specific markers for two strains is under progress.

Read more about our activities on white fly

Author

Ute Eiben
Ute Eiben
Whitefly in vegetables
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