Wednesday, November 29, 2017
Refining pesticides to kill pests, not bees
On Science Daily, researchers from Michigan State University's entomology department are trying to increase the effectiveness of pesticides on pests without impact the beneficial bugs. It is mentioned they found the key by molecular tweaking of the pyrethroids. Generally pyrethroids target the voltage-gated sodium channel, which is a protein found in nerve and muscle cells used for electric signaling in pests and bugs. Pyrethroids work by binding to the voltage gate preventing it from closing causing over-stimulation, which leads to the death of the insect. Rearchers have found a pyrethroid insecticide that bees are resistant to which is the tau-fluvalinate. This single protein of the pyrethroid could make the bees have the same resistance as humans. They believe this discovery could lead to better alternatives in protecting bees while still eliminating pests.
I believe this would be a great advancement in agriculture, I'm aware of the issue about how the bee populations are depleting. Most of the issues are due to pesticides, so this discovery could give bees a chance to repopulate. The benefits of this could possibly help by increasing pollination, because bees are the key players in most of the worlds crop industries. In overall, this discovery could benefit in a variety of ways.