, Volume 111, Issue 4, pp 1473-1480
Date: 19 Jun 2012

Virulence of Isaria sp. and Purpureocillium lilacinum to Rhipicephalus microplus tick under laboratory conditions

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Abstract

Rhipicephalus microplus (Canestrini) is an ectoparasite accountable for great economic losses. The use of entomopathogenic fungi to control arthropods has shown promising responses. The present study evaluated the virulence of Isaria farinosa (Holmsk.) Fr., Isaria fumosorosea (Wize) Brown and Smith, and Purpureocillium lilacinum (=Paecilomyces lilacinus) (Thom.) Samson to engorged females, eggs, and larvae of R. microplus. There were four treatment groups (105, 106, 107, and 108 conidia ml−1) and the control group (water and Tween 80, 0.1 % v/v). The treatment was based on immersion of the specimen in 1 ml of the suspension or control solution. The study observed changes in egg viability and larval mortality after treatment. The results showed that I. farinosa, P. lilacinum, and I. fumosorosea caused alterations in the biological parameters of R. microplus ticks. I. fumosorosea presented the greatest potential to control R. microplus engorged females in vitro, causing a 49 % decrease in nutritional index. All fungal isolates presented significant reduction in the egg production index. I. farinosa reduced the hatching percentage if the eggs were treated with the two highest conidial concentrations. All conidial concentrations of I. fumosorosea were able to reduce the hatching percentage significantly. All tested isolates showed pathogenicity toward unfed R. microplus larvae. As far as we know, this is the first study reporting the effect in vitro of I. farinosa, I. fumosorosea, and P. lilacinum to different developmental stages of R. microplus ticks.