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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Improved Production and Efficacy of Biological Control Agents

Authors
item Wagner, Renee
item McIntosh, Arthur
item Coudron, Thomas
item Shelby, Kent
item Goodman, Cynthia
item Grasela, James
item Brandt, Sandra

Submitted to: International Symposium on Biological Control of Arthropods
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: January 14, 2002
Publication Date: June 14, 2003
Citation: Wagner, R.M., Mcintosh, A.H., Coudron, T.A., Shelby, K., Goodman, C.L., Grasela, J.J., Brandt, S.L. 2003. Improved production and efficacy of biological control agents. Proceedings of International Symposium on Biological Control of Arthropods. p. 520.

Interpretive Summary: In order to optimize the use of biological control agents when released to control insect pests of agriculture, it is necessary to have adequate numbers of high quality organisms that are optimized for the environment into which they are being released. Susceptibility or resistance to several classes of insecticides was determined for the spined soldier bug, a predator of pest insects, and an artificial diet was developed and tested for this insect and several other beneficial predators. Diapause was studied in the two-spotted stink bug, in order to optimize conditions for storing insects as a component of cost-effective mass rearing strategies. A virus isolated from the diamondback moth was evaluated for its ability to kill pest insects, and cell lines established from multiple insect tissues were evaluated for their ability to support replication of this virus. Resistance to natural and modified viruses was selected for in a moth, and further evaluated in insect cell lines. The use of biological control is an attractive alternative to the use of chemical insecticides, particularly in greenhouse or organic production systems, or as a component of biologically-based integrated pest management systems. The improved production and efficacy of viruses and predators used in biological control will increase the availability and cost-effectiveness of these agents and will facilitate the development of sustainable pest management systems which integrate the use of natural enemies with other practices.

Technical Abstract: Susceptibility or resistance to several classes of insecticides was determined for the pentatomid predator, Podisus maculiventris, and an artificial diet was developed and tested for this insect and several other beneficial predators. Diapause was studied in Perillus bioculatus, in order to optimize conditions for storing insects as a component of cost-effective mass rearing strategies. A baculovirus isolated from the diamondback moth was evaluated for in vivo activity and in vitro host range, and cell lines from multiple tissues were evaluated for their ability to support replication of this virus. Resistance to wild-type and recombinant baculoviruses was selected for in a lepidopteran insect and further evaluated in permissive and non-permissive populations of a lepidopteran cell line.

Last Modified: 10/24/2014
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