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Managing resistance to chemical treatments in stored products pests


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Purpose of the review: This review focuses on key trends in resistance to chemical treatments in stored product pests, and advances in resistance management, with an emphasis on resistance to the fumigant phosphine.

Findings: Phosphine resistance continues to be a major concern. In particular, phosphine resistance in Cryptolestes ferrugineus has emerged as a serious issue, with some populations exhibiting the strongest level detected so far for this fumigant. In response, a 'quick knock down test' has been established to deliver industry and scientists 'same day' advice on the resistance status of field samples; sulfuryl fluoride is being developed as a 'resistance breaker' and phosphine dosages are being revised to manage this problem. There has been major progress in identifying the genes responsible for phosphine resistance and the development of molecular resistance diagnostics for key pests. Several studies on Rhyzopertha dominica have demonstrated that molecular screening can be used to determine the frequency of resistance alleles in samples collected from farm storages. Despite on-going research in several pests, there is no definitive answer to the question of whether there is a fitness cost associated phosphine resistance, with some studies showing a clear cost and others none. Evidence continues to emerge of resistance to grain protectants, including the juvenile hormone analogue methoprene. The development and adoption of spinosad, as a next generation 'green' treatment, and the use of protectant combinations provides opportunities to counter the problem of protectant resistance.

Directions for future research: A uniform set of protocols should be developed for phosphine resistance detection for all major species. It should combine 'quick tests' and molecular diagnostics to be adopted internationally. Research is required on the establishment of a decision making system that integrates newly developed grain protectants and fumigants, other alternative control methods, as well as an accurate and rapid resistance detection system for early warning of the emergence of new resistances.


Document Type: Research Article

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