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Article

Beauveria bassiana Multifunction as an Endophyte: Growth Promotion and Biologic Control of Trialeurodes vaporariorum, (Westwood) (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) in Tomato

1
Instituto de Investigaciones Agropecuarias (INIA) Quilamapu, Av. Vicente Méndez 515, Chillán 3800062, Chile
2
Facultad de Agronomía, Universidad de Concepción, Chillán 3780000, Chile
3
Facultad de Administración y Economía, Universidad Tecnológica Metropolitana, Santiago 1030000, Chile
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Insects 2020, 11(9), 591; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects11090591
Received: 19 June 2020 / Revised: 27 August 2020 / Accepted: 28 August 2020 / Published: 2 September 2020
The tomato, Solanum lycopersicum L. has great importance worldwide for its nutritional characteristics and its antioxidant content. It is cultivated in different geographical areas, under field and greenhouse conditions, and it can be subjected to abiotic and abiotic factors that negatively affect production and quality. In this study, we evaluated the effect of five native endophytic strains of Beauveria bassiana on the reproduction of greenhouse whiteflies and the growth of tomatoes. The endophyte was inoculated in the substrate, and plants were afterward exposed to adult populations of the insect. For plant-growth promoter activity, the effect of endophytic strains on phosphate solubilization, iron siderophores production, plant height, and biomass was determined. The RGM-557 strain reduced the number of eggs and nymphs per cm2 on leaflet by 66 and 65%, respectively, compared with the control (water); while in comparison with the chemical insecticide the reduction was 32 and 55%, respectively. Most strains showed some degree of phosphate solubilization and siderophores production. Plants inoculated with strains RGM-557 and RGM-731 produced the greatest plant heights; RGM-731 obtained the greatest plant biomass. Endophytic B. bassiana provide important protection levels against whiteflies in tomato—in addition to promoting their growth.
The tomato, Solanum lycopersicum L. is one of the most consumed vegetables in the world; nevertheless, it is affected by biotic and abiotic factors that reduce its productivity. The whitefly is globally considered as the main pest under protected crop conditions, where biologic control using endophytic fungi emerges as a sustainable alternative. We evaluated the indirect effects of five native endophytic strains of Beauveria bassiana on the reproduction of greenhouse whiteflies and the growth of tomatoes. The plant growth substrate was inoculated with five strains of this endophyte and the resulting plants were then exposed to whiteflies afterwards. The effect that endophytic strains had on phosphate solubilization, iron siderophore production, plant height, and plant biomass were evaluated. The evaluated endophytes reduced the number of eggs per cm2 on leaflets compared to the control and behaved similarly to the commercial synthetic insecticide. Leaflets inoculated with strains RGM-557, RGM-644 and RGM-731 showed fewer nymphs than the control and those treated with insecticide. RGM-557 and RGM-731 produced the greatest plant heights; RGM-731 obtained the greatest plant biomass. Our study provides evidence that native endophytic strains of B. bassiana have a biocontrol effect on whiteflies and could be used to promote tomato growth. View Full-Text
Keywords: entomopathogens; endophytes; biocontrol; Solanum lycopersicum; greenhouse whitefly entomopathogens; endophytes; biocontrol; Solanum lycopersicum; greenhouse whitefly
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MDPI and ACS Style

Barra-Bucarei, L.; González, M.G.; Iglesias, A.F.; Aguayo, G.S.; Peñalosa, M.G.; Vera, P.V. Beauveria bassiana Multifunction as an Endophyte: Growth Promotion and Biologic Control of Trialeurodes vaporariorum, (Westwood) (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) in Tomato. Insects 2020, 11, 591. https://doi.org/10.3390/insects11090591

AMA Style

Barra-Bucarei L, González MG, Iglesias AF, Aguayo GS, Peñalosa MG, Vera PV. Beauveria bassiana Multifunction as an Endophyte: Growth Promotion and Biologic Control of Trialeurodes vaporariorum, (Westwood) (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) in Tomato. Insects. 2020; 11(9):591. https://doi.org/10.3390/insects11090591

Chicago/Turabian Style

Barra-Bucarei, Lorena, Macarena G. González, Andrés F. Iglesias, Gonzalo S. Aguayo, Matías G. Peñalosa, and Pedro V. Vera 2020. "Beauveria bassiana Multifunction as an Endophyte: Growth Promotion and Biologic Control of Trialeurodes vaporariorum, (Westwood) (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) in Tomato" Insects 11, no. 9: 591. https://doi.org/10.3390/insects11090591

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