Diversity prevents resistance

Diversity prevents resistance

Postby Oscar » Thu Apr 02, 2015 10:25 am

Diversity prevents resistance

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by Staff Writers Leipzig, Germany (SPX) Apr 02, 2015

Our opponents always seem to be one step ahead. Although pest controllers now have numerous chemical preparations available, allowing them to take action against unwanted insects, the species targeted are developing a resistance against the different active substances at a rapid pace. Often a single change in the organisms' genetic material is enough to do this.

This means that scientists know more than 500 pests all over the world currently able to resist a total of 300 different insecticides. Many disease-transmitting mosquitoes defy any attempts to control them just as stubbornly as Colorado potato beetles and other agricultural pests.

On the other hand, other species that weren't being targeted actually suffered much more. Ultimately, pesticides don't just stay in one field, but end up in the bordering fields, woods and water. However, the insects living there develop much less re-sistance.

"Over time, these species become two to four times more resistant to the pesticide used," stated Professor Matthias Liess, Head of the Department for System Ecotoxicology at the UFZ. Pests, on the other hand, manage to become between ten and a thousand times more resistant.


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