“Field-evolved resistance” is defined as a “genetically based decrease in susceptibility of a population to a toxin caused by exposure to the toxin in the field.” The key component of “field-evolved” resistance is that it does confer decreased susceptibility to an insecticide in the field. Another key component is that the decrease in susceptibility to the insecticide is because of previous exposure of the target insect to the toxin in the field. Several studies have reported field-evolved resistance to crops engineered to express proteins from the bacterium, Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt). However, there has not been a consistent standard in the application of the definition of field-evolved resistance for Bt crops. The inconsistency in applying the definition arises from differences in the methods used to detect resistance, the ecology of the interaction between the pest and the Bt crop, and the effective dose the pest encounters while feeding on the Bt crop. Using case studies of reported resistance to Bt crops, it is demonstrated resistance does not come in a single form, and that in most cases, resistance can still be managed.
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Vol. 106 • No. 4