African Journal of
Agricultural Research

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Agric. Res.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1991-637X
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJAR
  • Start Year: 2006
  • Published Articles: 6688

Full Length Research Paper

Effect of transgenic cotton expressing Cry1Ac and Cry2Ab2 protein on infectivity of the entomopathogenic nematodes, Steinernema karii and Heterorhabditis bacteriophora

Hannah Karuri1*, Ruth Amata2, Nelson Amugune3 and Charles Waturu4
1Embu University College, University of Nairobi, P. O. Box 6-60100, Embu, Kenya. 2National Agricultural Research Laboratories, Kenya Agricultural Research Institute, P.O Box 14733-00800, Nairobi, Kenya. 3School of Biological Sciences, University of Nairobi, P. O. Box 30197-00100, Nairobi, Kenya. 4Horticultural Research Centre, Kenya Agricultural Research Institute, P.O. Box 220, Thika, Kenya.
Email: [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 19 June 2013
  •  Published: 15 August 2013


Entomopathogenic nematodes are used in biological control of pests. The cry proteins from insect resistant cotton may affect their infectivity. The effect of Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) cotton (06Z604D) on infectivity ofHeterorhabditis bacteriophora and Steinernema karii was investigated in the green house. The nematodes were introduced into pots containing Bt cotton (06Z604D), isoline (99M03) and Hart 89M (local non Bt cotton cultivar). After 6 months, the nematodes were recovered from soil and their infectivity towards Galleria mellonella larvae was determined. The presence of Bt protein in roots and soil was determined at the end of the growing season by qualitative enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Bt protein was present in the roots and soil of Bt cotton. No Bt protein was detected in HART 89M and isoline roots and soil. There was a significant species*time* treatment interaction and the nematodes collected from all the treatments caused >50% mortality.


Key words: Bacillus thuringiensis, entomopathogenic nematodes, virulence.