Preservation of aerial conidia and biomasses from entomopathogenic fungi Beauveria brongniartii and Metarhizium anisopliae during lyophilization
Stefan Toegel, Sharareh Salar-Behzadi, Andrea Horaczek-Clausen, Helmut Viernstein
Department of Pharmaceutical Technology and Biopharmaceutics, University of Vienna, Althanstrasse 14, A-1090 Vienna, Austria.
In this study, we assessed the stability provided by different formulations to aerial conidia or biomasses (conidia, blastospores, and mycelia) of Beauveria brongniartii and Metarhizium anisopliae subjected to lyophilization. First, the impact of the freezing and drying processes on spore survival was evaluated. Whereas unprotected B. brongniartii spores showed high cryosensitivity, those of M. anisopliae were markedly harmed by the drying process. Then, the protective efficiency of 14 excipients was systematically evaluated and optimized regarding required concentrations. Fructose, glucose, and saccharose significantly enhanced viabilities for B. brongniartii and M. anisopliae spores following lyophilization, especially as a result of their cryoprotective effects. In addition, the effect of various bulking agents on spore survival was studied and dextran 4 was selected to enhance the physical properties of the lyophilized products. The combination of fructose and dextran 4 was further applied to prepare lyophilized biomasses of both fungi. In comparison to freshly harvested biomasses, the lyophilized products showed similar growth rates and a comparable production of virulent secondary metabolites such as destruxin A, destruxin B, or oosporein, suggesting their applicability as biological control agents.