Submitted to: BARC Poster Day
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: January 26, 1998
Publication Date: N/A
The parasitic wasp, Edovum puttleri, is an important biological agent for controlling the Colorado potato beetle (CPB). State-subsidized augmentative releases of this wasp were able to successfully control CPB in New Jersey eggplant fields, but the cost of mass rearing Edovum on CPB eggs was high. Development of a suitable in vitro rearing system for the wasp would contribute to reducing the cost of producing large number of wasps for mass release. Recently, we reported the development of an artificial diet which supports the growth of Edovum through the pupal stage. Since the diet contained insect hemolymph, a costly component, our current research focuses on the use of a practical substitute, namely, insect cell lines and/or their products. Although most of the cell lines tested supported the growth of Edovum through the third instar, only the cell lines derived from CPB and gypsy moth embryos allowed the wasp to reach the pupal stage. Incorporation of the more effective CPB cell line into the incubation medium resulted in 61% 3rd instars, 44% prepupae and 9.5% pupae, as compared to 59.3%, 44.4%, and 3.7% of these stages, respectively, for Edovum reared on diet containing hemolymph. Cell- free media which had been preconditioned with cell lines were almost as effective as media containing cells in promoting the pupal formation of E. puttleri. Preconditioning for a period of 5 days was optimal. Since storage of the preconditioned medium at 4 degrees C reduced its effectiveness, the growth factor(s) did not appear to be cold stable. The use of insect cell lines or medium preconditioned with cell lines is as effective as hemolymph for the artificial rearing of E. puttleri.