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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Production Technology for Entomopathogenic Nematodes and Their Bacterial Symbionts

Authors
item Shapiro Ilan, David
item Gaugler, Randy - RUTGERS UNIVERSITY

Submitted to: Journal of Industrial Microbiology and Biotechnology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: November 5, 2001
Publication Date: March 1, 2002
Citation: Shapiro Ilan, D.I., Gaugler, R. 2002. Production technology for entomopathogenic nematodes and their bacterial symbionts. Journal of Industrial Microbiology and Biotechnology. v.28. p.137-146.

Interpretive Summary: Entomopathogenic nematodes are tiny round worms that kill many important insect pests, but do not harm humans, other animals, or the environment. These nematodes can be mass-produced in live insects or on artificial media such as in large fermentation tanks. Using live insects is simple but requires a lot of labor. Production on artificial media is cost efficient but requires substantial technological expertise and capital for startup. This paper offers new data and reviews the different approaches to growing entomopathogenic nematodes and the advantages and disadvantages of each.

Technical Abstract: Entomopathogenic nematodes (genera Steinernema and Heterorhabditis) kill insects with the aid of a mutualistic bacterium. The nematode-bacteria complex is mass-produced for use as biopesticides using in vivo or in vitro methods., i.e., solid or liquid fermentation. In vivo production (culture in live insect hosts) is low technology, has low startup costs, and resulting nematodes quality is high, yet cost efficiency is low. In vitro solid culture, i.e., growing the nematodes and bacteria on crumbled polyurethane foam, offers an intermediate level of technology and costs. In vivo production and solid culture may be improved through innovations in mechanization and streamlining. In vitro liquid culture is the most cost efficient production method but requires the largest startup capital and nematode quality may be reduced. Liquid culture may be improved through progress in media development, nematode recovery, and bioreactor design. This paper reviews and offers new data on the different approaches to growing entomopathogenic nematodes and the advantages and disadvantages of each. This paper offers new data and reviews the different approaches to growing entomopathogenic nematodes and the advantages and disadvantages of each.

Last Modified: 8/30/2014
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