Submitted to: Food Production and Consumption International Workshop Proceedings
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/27/2004
Publication Date: 3/27/2004
Citation: Jackson, M.A. 2004. Strategies for producing stable, effective fungal biocontrol agents using liquid culture fermentation. Food Production and Consumption International Workshop Proceedings.
Technical Abstract: Many fungi show potential for use as microbial biocontrol agents due to their ability to antagonize or exclude plant disease-causing organisms through parasitism or competitive exclusion or their ability to selectively infect and kill a wide variety of weedy plants and insect pests. A critical factor that must be considered when selecting a microbial biocontrol agent for commercial development is the availability of a cost-effective production and stabilization technology that yields an optimally effective form of the microbe. Selecting fungi for use as biocontrol agents and for amenability to liquid culture production requires an understanding of how the organism carries out its biocontrol function and the environment in which it will function. For use as a foliar spray or in post-harvest disease control applications, production of the fungal biocontrol agent as a yeast or yeast-like propagule is advantageous. Conversely, the potential to control terrestrial and aquatic weeds, soil-borne insects or soil-borne plant diseases with fungal biocontrol agents is greatly enhanced if propagules such as chlamydospores or microsclerotia can be produced that are capable of persisting in the soil or in an aquatic environment. Our research focuses on developing media and processes for the liquid culture production of promising fungal biocontrol agents. Results from our studies with the mycoherbicides Colletotrichum truncatum and Mycoleptodiscus terrestris and the mycoinsecticide Paecilomyces fumosoroseus will be used to demonstrate how nutritional factors regulate propagule formation and propagule 'fitness' during liquid culture production. A generalized nutritional screen for determining the fitness of potential fungal biocontrol agents for liquid culture production will be presented.