Beauveria bassiana is a potential candidate for use as an environmentally friendly bio-pesticide. We studied the infection process and histopathology of B. bassiana strain NDBJJ-BFG infection of the Colorado potato beetle (Leptinotarsa decemlineata) using scanning electron microscopy and hematoxylin-eosin staining of tissue sections. The results show that the fungus penetrated the insect epidermis through germ tubes and appressoria after spraying the larvae with conidial suspensions. The conidia began to germinate after 24 h and invade the epidermis. After 48 h, the conidia invaded the larvae with germ tubes and began to enter the haemocoel. By 72 h, hyphae had covered the host surface and had colonized the body cavity. The dermal layer was dissolved, muscle tissues were ruptured and adipose tissue was removed. The mycelium had damaged the intestinal wall muscles, and invaded into intestinal wall and midfield cells resulting in cell separation and tracheal deformation. After 96 h of inoculation, the internal structure of the larvae was destroyed. The research shows that B. bassiana NDBJJ-BFG surface inoculation resulted in a series of histopathological changes to the potato beetle larvae that proved lethal within 72 h. This indicated that this fungus has a high pathogenicity to Colorado potato beetle larvae.
Keywords: Beauveria bassiana; Colorado potato beetle; Leptinotarsa decemlineata; Scanning electron microscopy; Tissue section.
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