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Journal of Invertebrate Pathology

Combined use of the entomopathogenic fungus, Metarhizium brunneum, and the mosquito predator, Toxorhynchites brevipalpis, for control of mosquito larvae: Is this a risky biocontrol strategy?

Mariana Nadjara Kleina, Katia Cristina Kupper

Faculdade de Ciências Agrárias e Veterinárias, UNESP - Universidade Estadual Paulista, “Julio de Mesquita Filho”. Postgraduate in Agricultural Microbiology, CEP 14884-900, Jaboticabal, SP, Brazil.


The biocontrol efficiency of Aureobasidium pullulans strain ACBL-77 against Geotrichum citri-aurantii, causal agent of sour rot in citrus, and their interactions were evaluated. For this, were evaluated the incorporation of nutrients in optimizing the antagonistic activity of the yeast, the competition for nutrients between microorganisms, the effect of nutrients on yeast cell and biofilm production and their correlation in the biocontrol of disease, the survival of yeast in citrus fruits and the interaction between microorganisms using scanning electron microscopy. Micronutrients (boric acid, cobalt chloride and ammonium molybdate) favoured the antagonistic action of A. pullulans. Ammonium sulfate 1% and sucrose 0.5% favoured the yeast during the competition between the microorganisms. The addition of ammonium sulfate (1%) in the yeast culture stimulated biofilm production and increased the antagonistic activity against the disease, as also allowed the better survival of yeast in wounded sites of citrus fruit. The yeast was found to be able to form biofilms on citrus, deforming the pathogen hyphae. These results showed the importance of the addition of nutrients in A. pullulans based-formulations when aiming for their use on a commercial scale. This is the first report of a positive correlation between the increase in the quantity of biofilm produced by A. pullulans, with increased antagonistic activity.

Keywords: Ammonium sulfate, Biological control, Geotrichum citri-aurantii, Electron microscopy.

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