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1 June 2003 Evaluation of Transgenic Bt Corn for Resistance to the Asian Corn Borer (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae)
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The Asian corn borer, Ostrinia furnacalis (Guenée), is the most important insect pest on corn in China. Bt transgenic corn provides a new tool for Asian corn borer control. Monsanto’s YieldGard Bt transgenic corn expressing Cry1Ab protein, and a non-Bt control, were evaluated in Beijing. Laboratory bioassays were carried out by exposing neonates to an agar-free diet containing Bt corn whorl leaves, tassels, and anthers, or by exposing neonates directly to fresh silk and pollen. These are the tissues initially attacked by neonates in the field. All of these tissues, with the exception of pollen, contained sufficient insecticidal protein to kill ≥95% of larvae within 7 d. Surviving larvae had also not grown beyond first instar and weighed ≤0.1 mg. Although larvae feeding on Bt corn pollen were significantly smaller than those on non-Bt corn pollen, there was no significant difference in mortality. Field trials were also conducted with artificial infestations of Asian corn borer at mid whorl, late whorl, and silking stages. Damage ratings and number of larvae surviving per plant indicated that Bt corn was highly resistant to Asian corn borer. Therefore, YieldGard offers the potential for season-long protection against first- and second-generation Asian corn borer.

Kanglai He, Zhenying Wang, Darong Zhou, Liping Wen, Yanying Song, and Zhuyun Yao "Evaluation of Transgenic Bt Corn for Resistance to the Asian Corn Borer (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae)," Journal of Economic Entomology 96(3), 935-940, (1 June 2003).
Received: 1 October 2002; Accepted: 1 December 2002; Published: 1 June 2003

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