Insecticidal activity of a bacterial crystal protein expressed by a recombinant baculovirus in insect cells.

J.W.M. Martens, G. Hone, D. Zuidema, J.W.M. van Lent, B. Visser, J.M. Vlak

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51 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Baculoviruses are insect pathogens with a relatively slow speed of action, and this has limited their use as control agents of insect pests. Introduction into baculoviruses of genes which code for proteins interfering specifically with insect metabolism or metamorphosis, such as toxins, hormones, and enzymes, may enhance the pathogenicity of these viruses. The complete insecticidal crystal protein gene cryIA(b) of Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. aizawai 7.21 was engineered into the nuclear polyhedrosis virus of Autographa californica (AcNPV) in place of the polyhedrin gene. In infected Spodoptera frugiperda cells, the cryIA(b) gene was expressed at a high level without interference with AcNPV production. The crystal protein was found in the cytoplasm of S. frugiperda cells, mainly as large crystals with an ultrastructure similar to that of B. thuringiensis crystals. Infected-cell extracts inhibited feeding of the large cabbage white Pieris brassicae. The toxicity of the crystal protein expressed by AcNPV recombinants was comparable with that of the crystal protein expressed by a corresponding Escherichia coli recombinant.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2764-2770
JournalApplied and Environmental Microbiology
Volume56
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 1990

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