MOLECULAR APPROACHES TO ASPERGILLUS FLAVUS ECOLOGY AND CHARACTERIZATION OF COLONIZATION BY NON-TOXIGENIC BIOCONTROL STRAINS
Biological Control of Pests Research Unit
2009 Annual Report
1a.Objectives (from AD-416)
Use Aspergillus molecular techniques to ascertain genotypic variation of native Aspergillus use methodologies to track the success of introduced biocontrol strains. Apply techniques to assess efficacy of competitiveness and establishment of K49 when introduced as a bioplastic formulation.
1b.Approach (from AD-416)
The USDA lab will conduct field trials, isolate and purify representative Aspergillus isolates from soil, corn and other sources. The cooperator will develop genotyping methods to ascertain biotypes of A. flavus present in these populations and use these methods to ascertain the source (Soil, insect or air) of Aspergillus present in infested corn grain. In other studies the ARS will establish field and greenhouse studies to assess the potential for biological control strain K49 to competitively displace toxigenic strains of Aspergillus from soil and corn grain. These studies will establish the efficacy of K49 when applied as various formulations e.g., bioplastic granules.
This report documents research on molecular approaches to Aspergillus flavus ecology and characterization of colonization by non-toxigenic biocontrol strains to control aflatoxin contamination. Collaborations are ongoing with Mississippi State University scientist to use DNA fingerprinting technique and other molecular approaches for studying colonization of A. flavus strains and characterization A. flavus strains in soils and crops. ADODR monitored activites of this project through frequent visit, telephone and e-mail communications.