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2006 Arizona Adult Pink Bollworm Moths Sampling for Molecular Analysis

Prepared By:  Larry Antilla


A plan was developed by Dennehy and Tabashnik for late season sampling of adult pink bollworm moths in Delta traps for expediting molecular analysis to detect mutations associated with resistance to Bt cotton.  In the plan, 10 or more sites in Arizona cotton growing areas were subjected to multiple traps deployed, collected and sampled within a two day period to ensure the presence of live moths, hence “fresh” DNA for molecular analysis.  Traps from each site were examined for live moths (exhibiting movement) a minimum of 100 of which were then transferred into 95% ethanol and frozen for DNA analysis.

This approach will continue during the Eradication Program but the relative large numbers of native moths needed for analysis (50-100) are not normally available until September or October when late season moth flights occur.

For the purpose of the EPA submission, the ACRPC has proposed to identify up to five sample areas in which elevated native counts in Bt fields may suggest a resistance threat.  If such areas develop, they will be sampled according to the established protocol for analysis.

To date, (July 22, 2006) only one group of fields have given any indication of increased native moth levels.  These four fields (#s 4335-4338) have been trapped, sampled and have had up to 100 male moths preserved for molecular analysis.

Trapping data continues to be examined weekly for additional suspect sites.

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