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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Optimization of Inoculation for in Vivo Production of Entomopathogenic Nematodes

Authors
item Shapiro Ilan, David
item Brown, Ian - RUTGERS UNIVERSITY
item Tedders, Louis - RETIRED ARS ENTOMOLOGIST
item Gaugler, Randy - RUTGERS UNIVERSITY

Submitted to: Journal of Nematology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: August 1, 2002
Publication Date: December 1, 2002
Citation: SHAPIRO ILAN, D.I., BROWN, I., TEDDERS, L.W., GAUGLER, R. OPTIMIZATION OF INOCULATION FOR IN VIVO PRODUCTION OF ENTOMOPATHOGENIC NEMATODES. Journal of Nematology. 2002. v.34. p.343-350.

Interpretive Summary: Entomopathogenic nematodes are tiny round worms that kill many important insect pests, but do not harm humans, other animals, or the environment. One reason that the nematodes are sometimes not used is when their cost is not competitive with chemical insecticides. Optimizing nematode production procedures will lead to lowering of costs and wider use of these environmentally friendly biopesticides. This paper describes the optimization of procedures used to infect live insects with nematodes for mass production. The effects of nematode concentration and insect density were found to be important factors affecting nematode yield.

Technical Abstract: Entomopathogenic nematodes are potent biopesticides that can be mass produced by in vitro or in vivo methods. Our objective was to optimize in vivo inoculation of Steinernema carpocapsae (Weiser) and Heterorhabditis bacteriophora Poinar in Galleria mellonella (L.) and Tenebrio molitor (L.) by determining effects of inoculation method, nematode concentration, and host density. We found immersing hosts in a nematode suspension to be approximately four times more efficient in time than pipetting inoculum onto the hosts. The number of hosts exhibiting signs of nematode infection increased with nematode concentration and decreased with host density. We did not detect an effect of nematode inoculum concentration on nematode yield per host or per gram of host. Yield was affected by host density in only one of the four nematode-host combinations (S. carpocapsae and T. molitor). We conclude that optimization of inoculation parameters is necessary to maximize infection efficiency, an important component of developing an in vivo production system for entomopathogenic nematodes.

Last Modified: 8/30/2014
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