Researchers in Russia have discovered, isolated and studied a unique, highly active strain of sipovirus that infects butterflies. According to scientists, it can become the basis of insecticides against several agricultural pests at once. The biologists’ work has been published in the journal Microbiology Spectrum.

The use of viral biological preparations against insect pests is much more effective and safer than the use of chemical pesticides. One of the researchers of the Irkutsk State University Biology Research Institute Maxim Timofeev emphasizes that viral insecticides are an “ideal weapon” against pests: they are very species-specific, do not pollute the soil and are not dangerous for animals and humans.

The species, isolated by scientists from the Siberian silkworm, is devoid of its main disadvantages – high cost. The expert notes that it is not only very effective, but also quite easy to cultivate, which opens up broad prospects for large-scale industrial production.

Source: Ferra

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