The fall armyworm Spodoptera frugiperda (J.E. Smith) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) and some transgenic plants


  • Ingeborg Zenner de Polanía Universidad de Ciencias Aplicadas y Ambientales UDCA, Facultad de Ingeniería Agronómica, Bogotá
  • Helber A. Arévalo Universidad de Ciencias Aplicadas y Ambientales UDCA, Bogotá
  • Rodolfo Mejía Universidad de Ciencias Aplicadas y Ambientales UDCA, Facultad de Ingeniería Agronómica, Bogotá



Host strains, Geographic strains, Bt toxins, Susceptibility, Management


Based on preliminary experimental data, and a critical review of studies executed in North and South America, the possibility of the existence of two strains or biotypes of fall armyworm (FAW), Spodoptera frugiperda, in Colombia was studied. Moreover, its influence on the management of this polyphagous pest and the prospects of controlling the insect with transgenic corn and cotton hybrids that express one or more Bacillus thuringiensis toxins were analyzed and discussed. Based on the similarity of CL50 obtained during evaluations for tolerance to Bt toxin Cry1Ac of different FAW strains collected on different hosts and in diverse geographic regions, the existence of a strain that attacks both corn and cotton and another one that affects rice and pastures has been assumed. Populations collected from corn and cotton exhibited a tolerance up to 127 times higher than that of pasture population, which further showed a CL50 to the toxin Cry1Ab between 3.45 and 5.64 ppm. Likewise, some advances in the attainment of plant species, genetically transformed hosts of the insect with toxins different from those coming from Bt, have been shown and evaluated at an international level.


Download data is not yet available.


Abel, C.A. y J.J. Adamzcyk, Jr. 2004. Relative concentration of Cr1A in maize leaves and cotton bolls with diverse chlorophyll content and corresponding larval development of fall armyworm/Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) and southwestern corn borer (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae) on maize whorl leaf profiles. J. Econ. Entomol. 97(5), 1737-1744.

Abreu, D., A. Sánchez, M. Pérez, O. Valdivia, A. González, Y. Coll, C. Hernández, C. Ayra, J.A. Rubi, M. Pujol y R. Armas. 2004. Plantas de arroz transgénicos que expresan los genes modificados cry1Ca y el híbrido cry1A Cry1Ca son resistentes a Spodoptera frugiperda. En:, consulta: marzo 2006.

Adamczyk, Jr., J.J. y D.V. Sumerford. 2001. Potential factors impacting season-long expression of Cry1Ac in 13 commercial varieties of Bollgard® cotton. J. Insect Sci. 113. En:, consulta: enero 2004.

Aguilba, M. 2005. Iran releases world´s first BT rice. AgBioView & Manilla Bulletin. En: http://www.truthabouttrade.ord/article.asp?id=4891, consulta: marzo2006).

Álvarez, A. 1991. Reseña histórica y aspectos bioecológicos del gusano cogollero del maíz Spodoptera frugiperda (J. E. Smith). En: Memorias Seminario Spodoptera frugiperda (el gusano cogollero) en sorgo, maíz y otros cultivos. Socolen-Cis. Cali, 13-14 Junio, 1991. pp.12-16.

Cornicle, T. 2002. Marcadores moleculares, nuevos horizontes en la genética y la selección de plantas. Ed. Felix Varela, La Habana, Cuba. 366 p.

EPA U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. 1998. The environmental protection agency´s white paper on Bt plant - pesticide resistance mangement. Office of Pesticide Programs, Washington, D.C. No. 739-S-98-001. pp. 1-78.

FENALCE. 2006. Conjuntura Cerealista. No.9. Noviembre–diciembre. Departamento Económico, Bogotá. 2 p.

Foissac, X., N. Thiloc, P. Christou, A.M. Gatehouse y J.A. Gatehouse. 2000. Resistance to green leafhopper (Nephotettix virescens) and brown planthopper (Nilaparvata lugens) in transgenic rice expressing snowdrop lectin (Galanthus nivalis agglutinin, GNA). J. Insect Physiol. 46(4), 573-583.

García, F., A.T. Mosquera, C.A. Vargas S. y A.L. Rojas. 1999. Manejo integrado del gusano cogollero del maíz Spodoptera frugiperda (J.E.Smith). CORPOICA, Palmira, Boletín Técnico No. 7. 18 p.

Gatehouse, J.A., A.M. Gatehouse y E. Fitches. 1997. Effects of snowdrop lectin (GNA) delivered vía artificial diet and transgenic plants on the development of tomato moth (Lacanobia oleracea) larvae in laboratory and glasshouse trials. J. Insect Physiol. 43(8), 727-739.

Geng, J.-H., Z.-R. Shen, K. Song y L. Zheng. 2006. Effect of pollen of regular cotton and transgenic Bt+CpTI cotton on the survival and reproduction of the parasotoid wasp Trichogramma chilonis (Hymenoptera: Trichogrammatidae) in the laboatory. Environm. Entomol. 35(6), 1661-1668.

Greenplate, J.T. 1999. Quantification of Bacillus thuringiensis insect control protein Cry1Ac over time in bollgard cotton fruit and terminals. J. Econ. Entomol. 92(6), 1377-1383.

Greenplate, J.T., J.W. Mullins, S.R. Penn, A. Dahm, B.J. Reich, J.A. Osborn, P.R. Rahn, L. Ruschke y Z.W. Shappley. 2003. Partial characterization of cotton plants expressing two toxin proteins from Bacillus thuringiensis: relative toxin contribution, toxin interaction, and resistance management. J. Appl. Entomol.127, 340-347.

Han, L.-Z., K-M. Wu, Y-F. Peng, F. Wang y Y.-Y. Guo. 2006. Evaluation of transgenic rice expressing Cry1Ac and CpTI against Chilo suppressalis and intrapopulation variation in susceptibility to Cr1Ac. Environm. Entomol. 35(5), 1453-1559.

Kleiner, K., K. Raffa, D. Elli y H. Brent. 1998. Effect of nitrogen availability on the growth and phytochemistry of hibrid poplar and the efficacy of the Bacillus thuringiensis cry1A(a) d-endotoxin on gypsy moth. Rev. Can. Rech. 28(7), 1055-1067.

Levy, H.G., A. García-Maruniak, J.E. Maruniak. 2002. Strain identification of Spodoptera frugiperda (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) insects and cell line: PCR- RFLP of cytochrome oxidase C subunit I gene. Florida Entomol. 85(1), 186-190.

Lyncii, R.E., B.R. Wiseman, D. Plaisted y D. Warnick. 1999a. Evaluation of transgenic sweet corn hybrids expressing Cry1A(b) toxin for resitance to corn earworm and fall armyworm (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae). J. Econ. Entomol. 92(1), 246-252.

Lyncii, R.E., B.R. Wiseman, D. Plaisted y D. Warnick. 1999b. Management of corn earworm and fall armyworm (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) injury on a sweet corn hybrid expressing a cry1A(b) gene. J. Econ. Entomol. 92(5), 1217-1222.

Mahon, R., J. Finnegan, K. Olsen y L. Lawrence. 2002. Environmental stress and the efficacy of Bt cotton. The Austr. Cottongrower. March-April, 18-21.

Martinelli, S., R. Montrazi Barata, M.I. Zucchi, M. de Castro Silva-Filiio y C. Omoto. 2006. Molecular variability of Spodoptera frugiperda (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) populations associated to maize and cotton crops in Brazil. J. Econ. Entomol. 99(2), 519-526.

Morjan, W.E. y L.P. Pedigo. 2002. Suitability of transgenic glyphosate-resistant soybeans to green cloverworm (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae). J. Econ. Entomol. 95(6), 1275-1280.

Murúa, G. y E. Virela. 2004. Population parameters of Spodoptera frugiperda (Smith) (Lep., Noctuidae) fed on corn and two predominant grasses in Tucuman (Argentina). Acta Zoolo. Mex. 20(1), 199-210.

Nagadhara, D., S. Ramesh, I.C. Pasalu, Y.K Rao, N.P. Sarma, V.D. Reddy y K.V. Rao. 2004. Transgenic rice plants expressing the snowdrop lectin gene (gna) exhibit high level resistance to the whitebacked planthopper (Sogatella furcifera). Theor. Appl. Genetics 109(7), 1399-1405.

Nagosii, R., R. Meagiier, J. Adamczyk, K. Braman, R. Brandenburg, G. Nuessly. 2006. New restriction fragment length polymorphism in the cytochrome oxidase 1 gene faciltates host strain identification of fall armyworm (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) population in the southeastern United states. J. Econ. Entomol. 99(3), 671-677.

Ospina, J.G. 1999. Tecnología del cultivo de maíz. Fondo Nacional Cerealista, Fenalce. Produmedios, Bogotá. pp. 128-138.

Pashley, D.P., S.J. Johnson y A.N. Sparks. 1985. Genetic population structura of migratory moths: the fall armyworm (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae). Ann. Entomol. Soc. Am. 78, 756-762.

Pashley, D.P., M. McMichael y J.F. Silvain. 2004. Multilocus genetic analysis of host use, introgression, and speciation in host strains of fall armyworm (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae). Ann. Entomol. Soc. Am. 97(5), 1034-1044.

Posada, L.1989. Lista de insectos dañinos y otras plagas en Colombia. Instituto Colombiano Agropecuario, ICA. Boletín Técnico No. 43. Produmedios, Bogotá. 662 p.

Rossato B., G., M. Silveira G., A.E. Loeck, M. Zart, A. Medeiros N., O. Bernardi y F. da Silva A. 2006. Adequação de uma dieta artificial para os biotipos “milho” e “arroz” de Spodoptera frugiperda (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae). Bragantia 65(2), 317-323.

Sétamou, M., J.S. Bernal, J.C. Legaspi, T.E. Mirkov y B.C. Legaspi, Jr. 2002. Evaluation of lectin-expressing transgenic sugarcane against stalkborers (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae): effects on life history parameters. J. Econ. Entomol. 95(2), 469-477.

Stewart, S.D., J.J. Adamczyk, Jr., K.S. Knighten y F.M. Davis. 2001. Impact of Bt cottons expressing one or two insecticidal proteins of Bacillus thuringiensis on growth and survival of noctuid (Lepidoptera) larvae. J. Econ. Entomol. 94(3), 752-760.

Tabashnik, B.E., Y. Carriere, T.J. Dennchy, S. Morin, M.S. Sisterson, R.T. Roush, A.M. Shelton y J.Z. Zhao. 2003. Insect resistance to transgenic Bt crops: lessons from the laboratory and fields. J. Econ. Entomol. 96(4), 1031-1038.

Wakefield, M.E., H.A. Bell, E.C. Fitches, J.P. Edwards y A.M Gatehouse. 2006. Effects of Galanthus nivalis agglutinin (GNA) expressed in tomato leaves on larvae of the tomato moth Lacanobia oleracea (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) and the effect of GNA on the development of the endoparasitoid Meteorus gyrator (Hymenoptera. Braconidae). Bull. Entomol. Res. 96(1), 43-52.

Waquil, J.M., F.M.F. Villela, B.D. Siegfried y J.E. Foster. 2004. Actividade biológica das toxinas do Bt, Cry1A(b) e Cry1F em Spodoptera frujiperda (Smith) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae). Rev. Brasileira de Milho e Sorgo 3(2), 153-163.

Waquil, J.M., F.M.F. Villela y J.E. Foster. 2002. Resistencia do milho (Zea mays L.) transgenico a lagarta-docartucho, Spodoptera frugiperda (Smith) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae). Rev. Brasileira de Milho e Sorgo 1(3), 1-11.

Zenner de Polanía, I., A. Álvarez y S. Barreto. 2006. Influence of parasitism by Chelonus insularis Cresson (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) on the suscpetibility of Spodoptera frugiperda (J.E. Smith) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) to insecticides. Neotrop. Entomol. (Brasil). 35(6), 818-822.

Zenner de Polanía, I., J.A. Álvarez, R. Mejía C. y M.A. Bayona. 2005. Influencia de la toxina Cry1Ac del Bacillus thuringiensis sobre el desarrollo del cogollero del maíz, Spodoptera frugiperda (J.E. Smith). Rev. U.D.C.A Actualidad & Divulgación Científica 8(2), 129-139.

Zenner de Polanía, I. y F. Borrero. 1994. Resistencia del cogollero del maíz, Spodoptera frugipeda (J.E. Smith) a algunos insecticidas y su manejo. En: Memorias Seminario Internacional sobre el cultivo de maíz y sorgo sus principales plagas y enfermedades. Comité interinstitucional sobre los cultivos de sorgo y maíz. C.I. Tibaitatá. Enero 25-30, 1993. Produmedios, Bogotá. pp. 35-41.

Zenner de Polanía, I. y A. Saldarriaga V. 1986. Guía para el control de plagas. Tercera revisión. Sección de Producción de Medios. Instituto Colombiano Agropecuario ICA, Tibaitatá. pp. 215-217.


  • Abstract
  • PDF (Español)

How to Cite

Zenner de Polanía, I, Arévalo, H A, & Mejía, R. (2011). The fall armyworm Spodoptera frugiperda (J.E. Smith) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) and some transgenic plants. Revista Colombiana de Ciencias Hortícolas, 1(1), 103–113.



Other species section