Nemagel - A formulation of the entomopathogenic nematode Steinernema thermophilum mitigating the shelf-life constraint of the tropics

S. Ganguly, . Anupama, A. Kumar, B. S. Parmar

Abstract


NemaGel, a novel formulation for entomopathogenic nematodes, based on a newly developed hydrogel, has been found to enhance the shelf life of the indigenous nematode Steinernema thermophilum. The nematode concentration in the NemaGel can be adjusted up to 1 × 105 infective juveniles per gram. The survival of formulated nematodes was significantly better than that in aqueous suspensions after 9 months storage at 15 °C, and after 6, 2 and one weeks onward at 30, 35 and 40 °C, respectively. More than 50% survival of formulated infective juveniles was recorded even after 36 months storage at 15 °C, and 24, 16 and 8 weeks of storage at 30, 35 and 40 °C, respectively. Formulated nematodes stored at room temperature (exposed to fluctuating diurnal temperature conditions varying from 15 to 39 °C), from August, 2004 to May, 2005, showed 89% survival compared to only 16% in control, after 9 months of storage.

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