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The Future Role of Biotechnology in Integrated Pest Management

Abstract

Crop losses caused by pests are a major problem in both developed and developing countries. Increasing awareness of the environmental consequences of indiscriminate use of chemical pesticides has provided new impetus for the search for alternative ways of managing pests. Particular emphasis has been placed on strategies that cause less pollution to the environment and those that are affordable, especially for the less developed countries. One concept that has received a lot of attention is integrated pest management (IPM), which seeks to manage pests and minimise crop losses by using methods that are economically viable and less harmful to the environment. At least three distinct classes of new biotechnologies can have impacts on integrated pest management. These include microbial biotechnologies, plant molecular biology and genetics, and insect molecular biology and genetics. For example, recent advances in molecular biology have enabled scientists to overcome species barriers and to genetically alter plants, animals and microorganisms in ways that were not possible before. Already, several genetically altered plants which express genes that confer protection against pests have been produced. The techniques of biotechnology have also played important roles in elucidating pest populations and in studying the population dynamics of biological control agents and other types of organisms that live in association with crop plants. This article examines some of the major developments in the areas of molecular biology, genetics and biotechnology and the potential impacts that they could have on integrated pest management worldwide.

Résumé

Les pertes causées aux cultures par les ravageurs posent un problème majeur aussi bien dans les pays développés que ceux en développement. Une prise de conscience accrue vis-à-vis des conséquences environnementales de l’usage indiscriminé des pesticides chimiques a donné un nouvel élan à la recherche des solutions possibles pour le contrôle des ravageurs. Un accent particulier a été missur des stratégies occasionnant moins de pollution sur l’environnement et celles qui sont moins onéreuses, particulièrement pour les pays moins développés. Un des concepts qui a le plus attiré l’attention est celui de la lutte dirigée (IPM). La lutte dirigée cherche à contrôler les ravageurs et à minimiser les pertes sur les cultures en utilisant des méthodes qui soient économiquement viables et moins nuisibles à l’environnement.

Au moins 3 classes distinctes de biotechnologies nouvelles peuvent avoir de l’impact sur la lutte dirigée. II s’agit de la biotechnologie microbienne, la biologie et génétique moléculaire végétale, et la biologie et génétique moléculaire de l’insecte. Par exemple, des progrès récentes en biologié moléculaire ont permis aux scientifiques d’aller au délà des barrières des espèces et d’altérer par voie génétique des plantes, des animaux et des microorganismes d’une façon qui n’était pas possible auparavant Déja, plusieurs plantes modifiées par voie génétique et avec expression des gènes conferrant la protection centre des ravageurs ont été produites. Les techniques de biotechnologie ont aussi joué un important rôle dans l’élucidation des populations de ravageurs et dans l’étude de la dynamique des populations des agents de lutte biologique et d’autres types d’organismes vivant en association avec les plantes de cultures. Cet article examine certains développements majeurs dans les domaines de biologie moléculaire, de génétique et de biotechnologie et des impacts potentieles qu’ils pourraient avoir sur la lutte dirigée.

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Correspondence to E. O. Osir.

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Osir, E.O., Gould, F. The Future Role of Biotechnology in Integrated Pest Management. Int J Trop Insect Sci 15, 621–631 (1994). https://doi.org/10.1017/S1742758400016921

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Keywords

  • biotechnology
  • IPM
  • agriculture
  • developing countries

Mots Clés

  • biotechnologie
  • IPM
  • agriculture
  • pays en voie de développement