Screening of tropical isolates of Metarhizium anisopliae (Hypocreales: Clavicipitaceae) for virulence to the sweet potato weevil, Cylas formicarius (Coleoptera: Brentidae)

Dotaona, Ronnie and Wilson, Bree A L and Stevens, Mark M. and Holloway, Joanne and Ash, Gavin J. (2015) Screening of tropical isolates of Metarhizium anisopliae (Hypocreales: Clavicipitaceae) for virulence to the sweet potato weevil, Cylas formicarius (Coleoptera: Brentidae). International Journal of Tropical Insect Science, 35 (4). pp. 153-163. ISSN 1742-7584


The sweet potato weevil (SPW), Cylas formicarius, is a serious pest of sweet potato in Australia and Papua New Guinea. Ten strains of Metarhizium sp. isolated from Australian soil samples were evaluated for their growth characteristics and screened for virulence to adult SPW under laboratory conditions. All isolates except QD62 (48.6%) had moderate to high germination (66-97%), and all took 2 to 4 days to sporulate at 25 °C. The optimal temperature for radial growth for the majority of isolates was 30 °C, and there was a significant interaction between isolate and temperature (P< 0.05). Isolate QS155 showed the fastest radial growth at 30 °C. The internal transcribed spacer sequences showed slight variations among the isolates; however, all isolates were shown to be Metarhizium anisopliae. Isolates varied greatly in their virulence. At 10 days after inoculation (DAI) by immersion in a suspension of 1 × 107conidia/ml, 9 of the 10 isolates were virulent, causing 80-100% mortality of adult SPW. Only two isolates (QS001-6 and QS155) caused more than 50% mortality at 5 DAI. In dose-mortality bioassays, isolate QS155 had the lowest 20-day LC50 and LC90 values; however, there were no statistically significant differences in mortality among the three most promising isolates tested (QD66, QS001-6 and QS155). These results show that M. anisopliae isolate QS155 has potential as a microbial control agent for SPW, and that further evaluation under glasshouse and field conditions is warranted.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Files associated with this item cannot be displayed due to copyright restrictions.
Faculty / Department / School: No Faculty
Date Deposited: 15 May 2017 09:51
Last Modified: 15 May 2017 09:51
Uncontrolled Keywords: bioassay; Cylas formicarius; ITS; Metarhizium anisopliae; mortality; Sweet potato;
Fields of Research : 07 Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences > 0703 Crop and Pasture Production > 070308 Crop and Pasture Protection (Pests, Diseases and Weeds)
Socio-Economic Objective: B Economic Development > 82 Plant Production and Plant Primary Products > 8202 Horticultural Crops > 820215 Vegetables
Identification Number or DOI: 10.1017/S1742758415000211

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