Phenotyping dauer juvenile oxidative stress tolerance, longevity and persistence within wild type and inbred lines of the entomopathogenic nematode Heterorhabditis bacteriophora

in Nematology
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The commercial use of the entomopathogenic nematode Heterorhabditis bacteriophora as a biocontrol agent against noxious insects is limited due to its relatively short shelf-life. Longevity of dauer juveniles (DJ) during storage and in transit to end users is considerably restricted by environmental stresses. As a derivative stress triggered by environmental factors, oxidative stress causes a strong internal metabolic imbalance leading to lifespan reduction. In this study, the relation between DJ oxidative stress tolerance and longevity in H. bacteriophora was investigated at 25 and 7°C. A strong and significant correlation between DJ oxidative stress tolerance and longevity during storage in Ringer’s solution (R=0.802 at 7°C; R=0.604 at 25°C) was recorded. Phenotyping of these traits was performed for 40 H. bacteriophora wild type strain and inbred line collections. At 25°C, the mean time survived in Ringer’s by 50% of the DJ (MTS50) ranged from 21 to 57 days, whereas under oxidative stress, survival was from 3 to 22 days. At 7°C, a maximum MTS50 of 94 days was assessed when DJ were stored in Ringer’s, while the maximum MTS50 was only 25 days with oxidative stress induction. The heritability of DJ tolerance to oxidative stress, determined by using homozygous inbred lines, is high (h2>0.9), an indication of a high probability for successful selective breeding. In a subset of preselected H. bacteriophora inbred lines, DJ oxidative stress tolerance correlated with the DJ survival (persistence) after application to sand (R=0.719). The study provides fundamental data required for a genetic breeding programme to produce hybrids with improved stress tolerance and prolonged shelf-life and soil persistence.

Phenotyping dauer juvenile oxidative stress tolerance, longevity and persistence within wild type and inbred lines of the entomopathogenic nematode Heterorhabditis bacteriophora

in Nematology

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Figures

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    Mean time survived by 50% (MTS50) and 10% (MTS10) of 40 Heterorhabditis bacteriophora strain and inbred line dauer juvenile (DJ) populations after oxidative stress (70 mM H2O2) induction and storage at 25°C. Error bars indicate standard deviation of three independent trials with three replications. Different letters above error bars indicate significant differences of the MTS50 between nematode strains and lines (Tukey’s HSD test at P0.0001).

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    Mean time survived by 50% (MTS50) and 10% (MTS10) of 40 Heterorhabditis bacteriophora strain and inbred line dauer juvenile (DJ) populations after oxidative stress (70 mM H2O2) induction and storage at 7°C. Error bars indicate standard deviation of three independent trials with three replications. Different letters above error bars indicate significant differences of the MTS50 between nematode strains and lines (Tukey’s HSD test at P0.0001).

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    Mean time survived by 50% (MTS50) and 10% (MTS10) of 40 Heterorhabditis bacteriophora strain and inbred line dauer juvenile (DJ) populations stored in Ringer’s solution at 25°C. Error bars indicate standard deviation of three independent trials with three replications. Different letters above error bars indicate significant differences of the MTS50 between nematode strains and lines (Tukey’s HSD test at P0.0001).

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    Mean time survived by 50% (MTS50) and 10% (MTS10) of 40 Heterorhabditis bacteriophora strain and inbred line dauer juvenile (DJ) populations stored in Ringer’s solution at 7°C. Error bars indicate SD of three independent trials with three replications. Different letters above error bars indicate significant differences (Tukey’s HSD test at P0.0001).

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    Mean time survived by 50% (MTS50) and 10% (MTS10) of selected Heterorhabditis bacteriophora dauer juvenile (DJ) populations in a sand bio-assay stored at 25°C. Error bars indicate SD of two independent trials with three replications. Different letters above error bars indicate significant differences (Tukey’s HSD test at P0.0001).

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    Percentage dauer juvenile (DJ) survival of Heterorhabditis bacteriophora inbred lines (A, B) and crosses (C, D) after three weeks of incubation at 15°C and 25°C in the sand bio-assay. Nematodes were inoculated at 400 DJ and 6400 DJ per plate. Error bars indicates standard deviation of three replicates. Different letters on the error bars (lower case for ‘400’; upper case for ‘6400’) indicate significant differences in DJ survival (Tukey’s HSD test at P<0.05).

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    Correlation between the mean time survived by 50 % (MTS50) of Heterorhabditis bacteriophora dauer juvenile (DJ) populations exposed to oxidative stress (70 mM H2O2) and after storage in Ringer’s solution and stored at (A) 25°C and (B) 7°C. Each data point represents an average of three replicates of three different batches (Pearson’s coefficient test, P0.05).

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    Correlation between the mean time survived by 50% (MTS50) of Heterorhabditis bacteriophora dauer juvenile (DJ) populations (A) stored at 25°C and 7°C under oxidative stress and (B) between MTS50 in oxidative stress assay and persistence in the sand assay. Each data point represents an average of three replicates of three different batches (for A) and two batches (for B) (Pearson’s coefficient test, P0.05).

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