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[en] In order to reduce the use of chemical pesticides, great interest has been focused on environment-friendly biological control agents and botanicals that preserve biodiversity. In this context, our study aimed to assess the antifungal and herbicidal activities of Rosmarinus officinalis essential oil (EO) to find an alternative to synthetic pesticides. The chemical composition of R. officinalis essential oil was determined by g az chromatography-mass spectrometry analysis (GC-MS). Results showed that R. officinallis EO was rich in monoterpenes and the major constituents were 1,8-cineole (54.6%), camphor (12.27%) and α-pinene (7.09%). However, under laboratory conditions, two tests were carried out. The first one consisted on the study of EO antifungal activity using ELISA microplates and the second one consisted on evaluating the effect of EO on seedling growth of weeds. It was confirmed that this EO significantly inhibits spore germination of Fusarium oxysporum, Fusarium culmorum, Penicillium italicum and at 6 mM, the percentage of inhibition reached 100% on Fusarium oxysporum. Indeed, EO slows down seedling growth of Trifolium incarnatum, Silybum marianum, and Phalaris minor. In fact, EO at 5 mM completely inhibits seed germination. On the other hand, another experiment was carried out to evaluate the herbicidal activity by spraying EO on weeds. This showed that a novel herbicide formulation was set up for the first time to improve the activity of R. officinalis EO on post-emergence. Overall, R. officinalis EO can be suggested as a potential eco-friendly pesticide and suitable source of natural compounds potentially usable as natural pesticides.
[en] Highlights: • Non-target species in agricultural streams can acquire increased tolerance to pesticides. • Tolerance and species composition were affected even at contamination below regulatory thresholds. • The adaptation to pesticides significantly increased with local concentration. • Non-contaminated refuge areas hindered local adaptation to pesticides. Exposure to pesticides affects non-target aquatic communities, with substantial consequences on ecosystem services. Adaptation of exposed populations may reduce the effects of pesticides. However, it is not known under which conditions adaptation occurs when only a low toxic pressure from pesticides is present. Here, we show that Gammarus pulex, a dominant macroinvertebrate species in many agricultural streams, acquires increased tolerance to pesticides when recolonization from non-contaminated refuge areas is low. Populations in the field that were exposed to pesticides at concentrations several orders of magnitude below considerable acute effects showed almost 3-fold higher tolerance to the neonicotinoid insecticide clothianidin (mean EC50 218 μg L−1) compared with non-exposed populations (mean EC50 81 μg L−1). This tolerance of exposed populations increased from 2- to 4-fold with increasing distance to the next refuge area (0 to 10 km). We conclude that the development of tolerance for non-target species may occur at very low concentrations, much below those affecting sensitive test organisms and also lower than those predicted to be safe by governmental risk assessment frameworks.
[en] Mineralisation of atrazine in soil has been shown to depend on previous exposure of the herbicide. In this study, 24 Danish soils were collected and screened for potential to mineralise atrazine. Six soils were chosen, because they had never been exposed to atrazine, whereas 18 soils were chosen because of their history of application of atrazine or the related compound terbuthylazine. None of the 24 soils revealed a mineralisation potential of more than 4% of the added atrazine within a 60 day timeframe. In an atrazine adapted French soil, we found 60% mineralisation of atrazine in 30 days. Cattle manure was applied in order to boost the microbial activity, and a 2-3% increase in the atrazine mineralisation was found in some of the temperate soils, while in the highly adapted French soil it caused a 5% reduction. - The study highlights that pre-exposure of soils to triazine herbicides do not result in rapid mineralization in temperate soils.
[en] Most biomonitoring studies that have investigated the relationship between fluctuating asymmetry (FA) and anthropogenic stressors have measured organisms from polluted ecosystems and compared them to organisms at reference sites. What has received little attention is whether FA follows a dose-response relationship with stress, a key criterion of a useful biomarker. Using chicks from currently mandated avian reproductive tests we tested whether a composite index of FA (FAC), was related to the dose or duration of exposure of their parents to one of four different herbicides, and if FAC was indeed a more sensitive marker of stress than standard reproductive endpoints measured from this test. We found no consistent relationship between FAC and dose or duration of herbicide exposure in any of the four studies. Exposure to one of the four pesticides did result in significant reproductive toxicity but this was not accompanied or foreshadowed by higher levels of FAC. Our results do not support the hypothesis that FA is a reliable general biomarker of pesticide exposure
[en] The paper deals with a community of two ecologically independent insect species subjected to a combined spray of insecticides. The growth equations for the community are constructed taking breeding into account and assuming the presence of some sexually sterile males in the populations. The dynamical behaviour of the community is explained at length. A bioeconomic analysis of the spraying programme is undertaken and the existence of a bionomic equilibrium is proved. The optimal spraying policy is studied with the help of Pontryagin's maximum principle. Lastly, the principal results are summarized. (author)
[en] The study was conducted for the purpose of improving the application of fungicides against potato late blight (Phytophthora infestans (Mont.) de Bary) (PLB) in processing tomato. The usability of coarse spray quality with double flat fan air induction IDKT12003 nozzle and the impact of fixed and variable spray volume and adjuvants during alternate application of azoxystrobin and chlorothalonil were analysed on the basis of plant infestation and fungicide residues. The variable spray volume was calculated based on the number of leaves on a plant. The study was conducted during three vegetation seasons. Spraying of plants with significantly flattened canopies during the peak of the fructification season using an IDKT12003 nozzle was as effective as in the case of fine spraying performed with an XR11003 nozzle and facilitated the increase of fungicides residue. In the case of plants with high-spreading canopy at the beginning of fructification, XR11003 nozzle favoured the reduction of PLB infestation. Both spray volume adjustment systems enabled the same level of protection of tomato against PLB, which could result from alternate application of systemic and contact fungicides. Polyalkyleneoxide modified heptamethyltrisiloxane adjuvant, which causes siginificant increase in wetting and droplet spreading, facilitated the reduction of tomato PLB infestation during the application of fungicides using an IDKT12003 nozzle.
[en] Several herbicide-tolerant crops have been developed and commercialized from herbicide-tolerant mutants obtained through chemical mutagenesis followed by herbicide selection or direct herbicide selection of spontaneous mutations. All mutations used in commercial herbicide-tolerant crops are derived from a single nucleotide substitution of genes that encode enzymes or proteins targeted by herbicides. The alleles of all commercial herbicide-tolerant mutations are incompletely-dominant except for the triazine-tolerant mutation. (author)