Photorhabdus toxins: novel biological insecticides

Curr Opin Microbiol. 1999 Jun;2(3):284-8. doi: 10.1016/s1369-5274(99)80049-6.


Following concerns over the potential for insect resistance to insecticidal Bacillus thuringiensis toxins expressed in transgenic plants, there has been recent interest in novel biological insecticides. Over the past year there has been considerable progress in the cloning of several alternative toxin genes from the bacteria Photorhabdus luminescens and Xenorhabdus nematophilus. These genes encode large insecticidal toxin complexes with little homology to other known toxins.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Bacterial Toxins / genetics*
  • Bacterial Toxins / pharmacology
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • Enterobacteriaceae / chemistry
  • Enterobacteriaceae / genetics*
  • Insecta / drug effects
  • Insecticides / pharmacology
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid


  • Bacterial Toxins
  • Insecticides