The development of new bioinsecticides with high activity against a group of insect pests is a primary target to improve the economic level of use. However, other aspects such as broad insecticidal spectrum and an alternative to the current ones to which insects have evolved resistance is also an important issue. For this reason, we include in our objectives the discovery of strains with a activity to pest species from different clades (i.e,. hemiptera, nematoda,…) and with activity against pest species with either none or just few toxic strains reported to date.
We currently hold several collections of Bt isolates (making a total of around 1000 isolates) and we keep increasing their number with samples from different parts of the world. The characterization of the microbiological and the insecticidal activity of the strains is a goal to provide novel material for new formulations. In addition, additional properties of the strains of interest for the industry, such as the set of genes they contain, levels of insecticidal protein expression, lack of non-specific toxic agents, and the easy of growth in cheap culture media, are also a key aspect for their transfer to the industry. We hold two patents on two of the most toxic isolates against lepidopterans.
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