Evaluation of Corn Hybrids Expressing Cry1F, Cry1A.105, Cry2Ab2, Cry34Ab1/Cry35Ab1, and Cry3Bb1 Against Southern United States Insect Pests

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Studies were conducted across the southern United States to characterize the efficacy of multiple Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) events in a field corn, Zea mays L., hybrid for control of common lepidopteran and coleopteran pests. Cry1F protein in event TC1507 and Cry1A.105 + Cry2Ab2 proteins in event MON 89034 were evaluated against pests infesting corn on above-ground plant tissue including foliage, stalks, and ears. Cry34Ab1/Cry35Ab1 proteins in event DAS-59122-7 and Cry3Bb1 in event MON 88017 were evaluated against the larvae of Mexican corn rootworm, Diabrotica virgifera zeae Krysan and Smith, which occur below-ground. Field corn hybrids containing Cry1F, Cry1A.105 + Cry2Ab2, Cry34Ab1/Cry35Ab1, and Cry3Bb1 insecticidal proteins (SmartStax) consistently demonstrated reductions in plant injury and/or reduced larval survivorship as compared with a non-Bt field corn hybrid. Efficacy provided by a field corn hybrid with multiple Bt proteins was statistically equal to or significantly better than corn hybrids containing a single event active against target pests. Single event field corn hybrids provided very high levels of control of southwestern corn borer, Diatraea grandiosella (Dyar), lesser cornstalk borer, Elasmopalpus lignosellus (Zeller), and fall armyworm, Spodoptera frugiperda (J.E. Smith), and were not significantly different than field corn hybrids with multiple events. Significant increases in efficacy were observed for a field corn hybrid with multiple Bt events for sugarcane borer, Diatraea saccharalis (F.), beet armyworm, Spodoptera exigua (Hübner), corn earworm, Helicoverpa zea (Boddie), and Mexican corn rootworm. Utilization of field corn hybrids containing multiple Bt events provides a means for managing insect resistance to Bt proteins and reduces non-Bt corn refuge requirements.

Keywords: Diatraea grandiosella; Diatraea saccharalis; Spodoptera exigua; Spodoptera frugiperda; transgenic corn

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1603/EC12155

Publication date: October 1, 2012

More about this publication?
  • Journal of Economic Entomology is published bimonthly in February, April, June, August, October, and December. The journal publishes articles on the economic significance of insects and is divided into the following sections: apiculture & social insects; arthropods in relation to plant disease; forum; insecticide resistance and resistance management; ecotoxicology; biological and microbial control; ecology and behavior; sampling and biostatistics; household and structural insects; medical entomology; molecular entomology; veterinary entomology; forest entomology; horticultural entomology; field and forage crops, and small grains; stored-product; commodity treatment and quarantine entomology; and plant resistance. In addition to research papers, Journal of Economic Entomology publishes Letters to the Editor, interpretive articles in a Forum section, Short Communications, Rapid Communications, and Book Reviews.
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