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Keywords:

  • entomopathogens;
  • agrochemicals;
  • selectivity;
  • standardization

Abstract

The objective of this work was to test and compare different techniques used in tests for compatibility between the entomopathogenic fungus Beauveria bassiana (Balsamo) Vuill and phytosanitary products, in order to develop a protocol for in vitro tests. Four modes of contact were studied between B bassiana (CG432) and the fungicides iprodione (Rovral® 500 g litre−1 SC) and azoxystrobin (Amistar® 500 g kg−1 WG), and the insecticide endosulfan (Thiodan® 350 g litre−1 EC), at three rates. The techniques consisted in incorporating the products into the culture medium (IM), combining the conidia into the products mix (MP) and spraying the products before (SB) and after (SA) inoculation of the fungus on Petri dishes. The fungitoxic effect of the products was studied on the basis of parameters such as germination, colony-forming units (CFUs), vegetative growth and sporulation. The effect of azoxystrobin on conidial germination was significantly higher in the IM technique than in the other techniques. With regard to CFUs, the IM and SB techniques showed the greatest differences relative to the control. Vegetative growth and sporulation were more affected when azoxystrobin was sprayed before the fungus was applied. At the commercial rate, iprodione had a greater effect on the CFU parameter in the IM and MP techniques, and on vegetative growth in the IM technique, than the other techniques used; however, there was no significant difference occurred between the techniques at the commercial rate with respect to germination and sporulation. Endosulfan was more toxic to germination in techniques SB and SA, and to the CFUs parameter in techniques IM and MP. As to vegetative growth and sporulation, regardless of rate, a more pronounced effect was observed in IM than in the other techniques. It can be inferred that there are differences between techniques and that a standardization of the compatibility tests is necessary. Another inference is that these techniques should reflect realistic exposure of the fungus to chemical formulations under field conditions. Copyright © 2005 Society of Chemical Industry