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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Peoria, Illinois » National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research » Crop Bioprotection Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #241569

Title: Improving Formulations for Biopesticides: Enhanced UV Protection for Beneficial Microbes

item Behle, Robert
item Compton, David - Dave
item Kenar, James - Jim
item Shapiro Ilan, David

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/20/2009
Publication Date: 10/20/2009
Citation: Behle, R.W., Compton, D.L., Kenar, J.A., Shapiro Ilan, D.I. 2009. Improving Formulations for Biopesticides: Enhanced UV Protection for Beneficial Microbes. ASTM. p. 13.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: As society pushes for environmentally friendly production practices in agriculture, control of insect pests of plants often focuses on developing microbial-based biopesticides. Specific bacteria, fungi, and viruses have the potential to provide effective control of pests when applied to plants using techniques similar to those used for chemical pesticide applications. Yet, these microbes all suffer from rapid degradation when exposed to sunlight, which drastically limits their field efficacy. One effective solution is to develop biopesticide formulations to protect the beneficial microbe from sunlight energy, specifically the ultraviolet (UV) wavelengths. Technologies (ingredients and processes) continue to be developed that may provide UV protection in a variety of formulations. SoyScreen consists of feruloylated soy glycerides specifically developed to absorb UV energy by covalently modifying soybean oil with ferulic acid (a ubiquitous plat component from lignin). Although originally designed for the cosmetic industry, SoyScreen has potential to benefit oil-based formulations such as for hydrophobic fungal conidia of Beauveria bassiana or Metarhizium anisophliae. Furthermore, SoyScreen can be used with a starch-oil composite technology, known as Fantesk™, to encapsulate SoyScreen oil in a jet cooked starch matrix that improves SoyScreen’s UV absorption and efficacy. These starch-SoyScreen composites may be useful to formulate aqueous-based systems without synthetic surfactants to deliver and protect microbial biopesticies. Insecticidal viruses that are extremely sensitive to degradation by sunlight have been effectively encapsulated within water insoluble lignin particles using a spray-drying process; this process prevents disassociation of microbes from the protective agent when diluted in the spray tank. Techniques are currently being developed to produce an adjuvant formulation with water-soluble lignin in an effort to provide UV protection for a broader range of commercial pesticides (thus bypassing EPA registration of individual pesticide formulations). These technologies are considered to be environmentally benign and should fit easily in the biopesticide persona. The versatility of these products and processes provide a variety of formulations suitable for specific biopesticide applications.