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Last update: May 2021

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Plantes et Système de cultures Horticoles

Zone de texte éditable et éditée et rééditée

Characterizing insecticide resistance and understanding the causes of their distributions in agricultural landscapes.

Pests develop resistances in response to high insecticide selection pressures. Two types of mechanisms are frequent: target mutation and detoxification. Understanding the mechanisms of these resistances helps: (i) to implement detection tools to monitor resistances over large scales and to locally manage problematic situations, (ii) to anticipate cross-resistance to different or new insecticides, often linked to detoxification,  and (iii) to improve strategies for managing these resistances.

In apple orchards of south-eastern France, which are often heavily treated (FTI – frequency treatment index of approx. 35, among which approx. 9 insecticides in conventional orchards), codling moth has developed many resistances to chemical and / or biological insecticides. Analyzes of resistance mechanisms to chemical insecticides at local scales confirmed their complex interweaving. Indeed, detoxification enzymes and target mutations are sometimes found within a single individual in French populations. More conventionally, the activities of the cytochrome P450 oxygenases as well as the glutathione-S-transferases confer cross-resistance to several insecticides in Greek populations. The resistance of the codling moth to the granulosis virus is particularly interesting because this is the first case of resistance to a virus in a pest. Our work has shown that the resistance of the codling moth to the granulosis virus is multigenic, with a major heterosomal gene explaining mostly the resistance phenotype. Another autosomal minor gene is also involved in this resistance. No cost of resistance has been demonstrated, resistant individuals even have shorter developmental periods than susceptible ones.

We have also carried out studies on insecticide resistances of the oriental fruit moth (Grapholita molesta), on Tuta absoluta a major pest of tomato, and on the European cornborer (Ostrinia nubilalis).