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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: UNDERSTANDING CORN ROOTWORM-HOST INTERACTIONS TOWARD BASIC AND APPLIED GOALS

Location: Plant Genetics Research

2013 Annual Report


1a.Objectives (from AD-416):
1: Isolate and identify chemical factors responsible for host recognition and host acceptance by western corn rootworm larvae. 2: Evaluate the chemistry of alternate hosts and native sources of resistance in maize to WCR larval feeding for feeding stimulants and host-recognition factors and correlate their chemical profile with WCR behavior on these plants. 3: Evaluate potential applications of WCR larval feeding stimulants. 4: Evaluate feeding behavior of WCR larvae that are resistant to Cry3Bb1 transgenic corn on Bt and isoline corn.


1b.Approach (from AD-416):
A collaborative approach will be taken with Colorado State University (CSU). Aspects of the proposal having to do with chemical separations and identifications will be done at CSU along with most of the behavioral bioassays. Objective 4, all field work in Objectives 2 and 3, and insect rearing will be done by ARS in Columbia, MO. Aspects done at each location will be put together toward joint accomplishments.


3.Progress Report:

This work is related to Objective 1 of the parent project: “Develop lines of the western corn rootworm resistant to transgenic corn and investigate the biology, pest/host interactions, and fitness costs of resistant and control colonies as they relate to resistance management and rootworm biology” and addresses research conducted under NP304 "Crop Protection and Quarantine" Component 1: Protection of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops.

Seed mix “refuges” have recently been registered for commercial sale and are likely to become the dominant tactic to delay the evolution of resistance of insect pests to Bt corn. In seed mix refuges though, insect movement from plant to plant sometimes speeds the development of resistance. To understand the role of western corn rootworm larval movement in a seed mix scenario, a series of treatment combinations were evaluated in the field (all Bt, all isoline, isoline surrounded by Bt, and Bt surrounded by isoline corn). Each combination of Bt and isoline corn had two types of rootworm infestations. Although Bt corn performed quite well in nearly all planting and infestation combinations, when surrounded by two highly damaged isoline plants, damage to Bt plants increased significantly due to larval movement from nearby isoline plants. This study was performed using two Bt lines registered for commercialization by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).


Last Modified: 11/25/2014
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