Using PDE Inhibitors to Combat Nematode Infestation
Tech ID: 13_019
A global problem, phytoparasitic nematode infestation of crops causes $80-100 billion in annual crop damage. These nematodes, which include Heterodera species, Meloidogyne species, and others, are found in almost every foodproducing nation. For example, Heterodera glycines (Soybean Cyst Nematode, or SCN), affects soybean crops grown in Asia, Africa, and North and South America. SCN is itself responsible for approximately $500 million in crop losses annually in the United States. Meloidogyne hapla are found even more extensively throughout the world and is responsible for about 5% of crop loss worldwide. Juvenile parasitic nematodes, found naturally in the soil, invade the plants’ roots and begin feeding. Females remain embedded in the roots and lay their eggs into a mass that extends through the roots and into the soil. It typically takes only 3-4 weeks for a nematode egg to develop into an egg-laying adult. Nematode species have phosphodiesterase (PDE) enzymes, whereas plants do not. PDE inhibitors have been developed by pharmaceutical companies to combat a variety of human health conditions, and it was discovered that these PDE inhibitors also interact with nematode PDE enzymes. Our research has shown that PDE inhibitors substantially reduce juvenile nematode motility. Because nematodes must latch on to a food source to cause disease, interrupting the nematode life cycle prior to finding a food source will prevent a parasitic nematode from causing disease.
- Agribusiness, Chemical, and Pharmaceutical Companies
- Industrial Farming
- Small Scale and Organic Farming
PCT Application No. PCT/US14/29910
Rick Cote, Ph.D.