Year: 2014 | Month: December | Volume 7 | Issue 4
Verticillium lecani (Zimm.): A potential entomopathogenic fungus
Development of insect resistance and risk to the environment due to indiscriminate use of conventional chemical pesticides for insect pest management favored the introduction of one of the new alternatives as biological control. Entomopathogenic fungi are one of the most versatile biological control agents for sustainable management. The most considerable fungal species are Metarhizium spp., Beauveria spp., Nomuraea rileyi, Verticillium lecanii and Hirsutella spp. Out of these fungi, V, lecanii are opportunistic and widely distributed ascomycete fungi that has the ability to cause mycosis in a number of insects of orders Homoptera, Coleoptera and Lepidoptera. V. lecanii are easy to mass produce, store and are effective over a wide range of temperatures and humidity levels. It also provides a rapid kill at optimum doses and the fungus has been recently commercialized as a microbial agent for pest management. It has the additional features to produce extracelullar enzymes, such as chitinases which helps in promoting host colonization. It also shows compatibility with commonly used agrochemicals such as insecticides or fungicides and other biocontrol agents. Because of these numerous advantages, it can be considered as a potential biocontrol agentâ€™s in integrated pest management.
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