Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) bacteria have been recognized for their high potential in the control of various agricultural pests. Recently, there has been multiple advances in both, the research and the market of novel insecticidal products, involving this biological agent. Developments in micro/nanotechnology have opened new perspectives for the production of more efficient formulations that can overcome some obstacles associated with the use of Bt-products in the field, such as formulation instability and loss of activity due to the degradation of toxins by their exposure to ultraviolet radiation, among other problems. The present proposal will explore the efficiency and mechanism of action of Bt-products based on micro/nanotechnology formulations. Several strategies will be addressed in order to assess the influence of encapsulation on the action of Bt toxins, such as analysis of crystals solubilization and activation in the gastric juice of the larvae, as well as their biding to specific receptors. In addition, the damage caused by microencapsulated Bt in the larval intestinal epithelium will also be investigated in vivo.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: