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Effect of NaCl-stressed Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) cotton on the feeding behaviors and nutritional parameters of Helicoverpa armigera.


ABSTRACT: Saline-alkali soil is an arable land resource on which transgenic Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) cotton has been planted on a large scale in accordance with food security strategies. There are, however, concerns about the insecticidal effects of Bt cotton on target insect pests. In this study, a Bt cotton variety, GK19, and its nontransgenic parent variety, Simian-3, were used as experimental models for investigating the effect of the expression of exogenous insecticidal proteins in Bt cotton under NaCl stress on the feeding behavior and nutritional parameters of Helicoverpa armigera. The results showed that the expression of exogenous insecticidal proteins in GK19 was significantly inhibited under NaCl stress. However, the feeding, crawling, resting and spinning down behavior of the 5th instar H. armigera larvae on GK19 Bt cotton, as well as the amount of food consumed and feces produced by these larvae, did not markedly differ under different NaCl concentrations. In contrast, the mean relative growth rate (MRGR), relative growth rate (RGR), approximate digestibility (AD), efficiency of conversion of ingested food (ECI) and efficiency of conversion of digested food (ECD) of the larvae markedly decreased in response to NaCl stress. Under the same concentration of NaCl, the nutritional parameters of the bollworm larvae on GK19 Bt cotton or Simian-3 nontransgenic cotton were different. However, the interaction between salt stress and cotton variety had no significant effect on the feeding behavior or nutritional parameters of H. armigera larvae. These results may provide a scientific basis for determining the effect of exogenous insecticidal protein expression in Bt cotton under NaCl stress on H. armigera and can therefore be useful for the effective application of Bt cotton in saline-alkali soils to prevent and control H. armigera.

SUBMITTER: Luo JY 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC6138370 | BioStudies | 2018-01-01

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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