Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

A New Defense Against Insect Pests

Date:
December 29, 2003
Source:
USDA / Agricultural Research Service
Summary:
A new biological control developed by Agricultural Research Service scientists may provide an important defense against some of the most destructive insect pests that farmers face.

A new biological control developed by Agricultural Research Service scientists may provide an important defense against some of the most destructive insect pests that farmers face.

Related Articles


A bacterium called Chromobacterium suttsuga has been found to be effective against Colorado potato beetles, corn rootworms, diamondback moths, silverleaf whiteflies and green stinkbugs. These pests collectively cost farmers almost $3 billion annually in crop losses and control expenses.

The team of ARS scientists involved in the research includes microbiologist Phyllis Martin, laboratory technician Ashaki Shropshire, molecular biologist Dawn Gundersen-Rindal and entomologists Dale Gelman, Michael Blackburn and Robert Farrar--all at the Insect Biocontrol Laboratory in Beltsville, Md.--plus entomologist Jeffrey Aldrich and visiting scientist Edson Hirose at the Chemicals Affecting Insect Behavior Laboratory, also in Beltsville. A patent application for the discovery has been filed.

In lab tests, the scientists found that C. suttsuga seems to produce multiple toxins that deliver a lethal blow to the pests. Preliminary results from field tests have confirmed lab results, and more field tests are planned.

The bacterium's toxins can be combined with chemical compounds and then applied to soil, plants or seeds. To control soil-dwelling pests, rice grains can be treated with the toxins and applied to the soil, where pests will feed on the treated grains.

Insect pests often develop resistance to chemical insecticides, so biological compounds are regularly investigated for insecticidal properties. Biological control agents can be an important addition or alternative to synthetic chemical pesticides, and important in integrated pest management.

Other advantages of C. suttsuga are that it's stable in the environment, and insects readily ingest it.

The discovery may ultimately provide a new control for agriculturally important insect pests and give growers alternatives to chemical insecticides.

ARS is the chief scientific research agency of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by USDA / Agricultural Research Service. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

USDA / Agricultural Research Service. "A New Defense Against Insect Pests." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 29 December 2003. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/12/031228165802.htm>.
USDA / Agricultural Research Service. (2003, December 29). A New Defense Against Insect Pests. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/12/031228165802.htm
USDA / Agricultural Research Service. "A New Defense Against Insect Pests." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/12/031228165802.htm (accessed November 25, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) The US FDA is announcing new calorie rules on Tuesday that will require everywhere from theaters to vending machines to include calorie counts. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Feast Your Eyes: Lamb Chop Sent Into Space from UK

Feast Your Eyes: Lamb Chop Sent Into Space from UK

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Nov. 25, 2014) Take a stab at this -- stunt video shows a lamb chop's journey from an east London restaurant over 30 kilometers into space. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cambodian Capital's Only Working Elephant to Retire in Jungle

Cambodian Capital's Only Working Elephant to Retire in Jungle

AFP (Nov. 25, 2014) Phnom Penh's only working elephant was blessed by a crowd of chanting Buddhist monks Tuesday as she prepared for a life of comfortable jungle retirement after three decades of giving rides to tourists. Duration: 00:36 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stray Dog Follows Adventure Racing Team for 6-Day Endurance Race

Stray Dog Follows Adventure Racing Team for 6-Day Endurance Race

Buzz60 (Nov. 24, 2014) A Swedish Adventure racing team travels to try and win a world title, but comes home with something way better: a stray dog that joined the team for much of the grueling 430-mile race. Jen Markham has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins