Navigation Links
Scientists make turfgrass safer for animals, deadly for insects
Date:9/6/2011

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The right combination of compounds produced by a beneficial fungus could lead to grasses that require fewer pesticides and are safer for wildlife and grazing animals, according to Purdue University scientists.

Neotyphodium is a fungus called an endophyte. It lives symbiotically, feeding off many species of grasses while providing the grass with protection from insects such as black cutworm. But Neotyphodium also can be toxic to animals based on the types of alkaloids it produces. It was once a serious concern for pasture managers.

Scientists have previously eliminated alkaloid profiles that caused toxicity in livestock, meaning pasture managers could feed their livestock without making them sick. But in making the grasses safe for animals, their susceptibility to insects came into question.

"These endophytes have changed everything for farmers who let their animals graze," said Douglas Richmond, a Purdue assistant professor of turfgrass entomology and applied ecology. "But they created another potential problem."

Richmond worked with researchers in New Zealand to assemble a series of Neotyphodium endophytes that are safe for livestock consumption and tested them to see which would also act as natural insecticides. They found a relatively few strains of the fungus that meet both criteria by producing two key alkaloid toxins - N-acetyl norloline and peramine which are a product of the fungal metabolism. The scientists determined they were effective by characterizing insect growth and survival on grasses with different alkaloid profiles.

Richmond said that grasses naturally infected with the desired endophyte strains can now be propagated for commercial production.

"Both are relatively safe for mammals and other grazing wildlife," Richmond said. "Now the seed industry can put these endophytes into turf and pasture grasses and not worry about potential non-target effects."

Those endophytes also mean that farmers, golf course turf managers and even homeowners caring for their lawns could use fewer insecticides to manage their grasses.

"I think this is going to be very important for sustainability. It's going to decrease the footprint of cultured turf and pasture grasses," said Richmond, whose results were published in the Journal of Environmental Entomology. "And if you like having wildlife around having deer come up to your lawn if you live near the woods this is a benefit because it's safe for those animals."


'/>"/>

Contact: Brian Wallheimer
bwallhei@purdue.edu
765-496-2050
Purdue University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Scripps Research scientists pinpoint shape-shifting mechanism critical to protein signaling
2. New cellular surprise may help scientists better understand human mitochondrial diseases
3. Scripps Research scientists establish new class of anti-diabetic compound
4. Scripps Research scientists produce first stem cells from endangered species
5. Scientists announce human intestinal stem cell breakthrough for regenerative medicine
6. Scientists unravel the cause of rare genetic disease: Goldman-Favre Syndrome explained
7. Hurricane Irene: Scientists collect water quality and climate change data from huge storm
8. Tropical coral could be used to create novel sunscreens for human use, say scientists
9. Scientists find new drug candidates for set of protein-folding diseases
10. Weight loss without the hunger: Cornell scientists say eat a lighter lunch
11. Scientists receive grant to develop new DNA sequencing method
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/15/2016)... New York , June 15, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... a new market report titled "Gesture Recognition Market by ... and Forecast, 2016 - 2024". According to the report, ... USD 11.60 billion in 2015 and is estimated ... reach USD 48.56 billion by 2024.  ...
(Date:6/7/2016)... -- Syngrafii Inc. and San Antonio Credit Union (SACU) ... Syngrafii,s patented LongPen™ eSignature "Wet" solution into SACU,s ... in greater convenience for SACU members and operational ... document workflow and compliance requirements. Logo ... Highlights: ...
(Date:6/2/2016)... The Weather Company , an IBM Business (NYSE: IBM ... which consumers will be able to interact with IBM Watson ... or text and receive relevant information about the product or ... long sought an advertising solution that can create a one-to-one ... valuable; and can scale across millions of interactions and touchpoints. ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/27/2016)... 27, 2016  Liquid Biotech USA ... of a Sponsored Research Agreement with The University ... (CTCs) from cancer patients.  The funding will be ... correlate with clinical outcomes in cancer patients undergoing ... then be employed to support the design of ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Researchers at the Universita Politecnica ... in people with peritoneal or pleural mesothelioma. Their findings are the subject of a ... , Diagnostic biomarkers are signposts in the blood, lung fluid or tissue of ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Md. , June 23, 2016 A person ... from the crime scene to track the criminal down. ... the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) uses DNA evidence ... Sound far-fetched? It,s not. The FDA ... sequencing to support investigations of foodborne illnesses. Put as simply ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016   EpiBiome , a precision microbiome ... in debt financing from Silicon Valley Bank (SVB). The ... to advance its drug development efforts, as well as ... "SVB has been an incredible strategic partner to ... traditional bank would provide," said Dr. Aeron Tynes ...
Breaking Biology Technology: