Ramesha Chinnaswamy, Hothur Lakshmi, Savarapu S. Kumari, Chebba M. Anuradha, Chitta S. Kumar
Journal of Insect Science 12 (3), 1-18, (22 January 2012) https://doi.org/10.1673/031.012.0301
KEYWORDS: approximate digestibility, breed, consumption index, leaf-cocoon ratio, leaf-shell ratio, metabolic rate, silkworm
The activity of sericulture is declining due the reduction of mulberry production area in sericulture practicing countries lead to adverse effects on silkworm rearing and cocoon production. Screening for nutrigenetic traits in silkworm, Bombyx mori L. (Lepidoptera: Bombycidae) is an essential prerequisite for better understanding and development of nutritionally efficient breeds/hybrids, which show less food consumption with higher efficiency conversion. The aim of this study was to identify nutritionally efficient polyvoltine silkworm strains using the germplasm breeds RMW2, RMW3, RMW4, RMG3, RMG1, RMG4, RMG5, RMG6 and APM1 as the control. The 1st day of 5th stage silkworm larvae of polyvoltine strains were subjected to standard gravimetric analysis until spinning for three consecutive generations covering three different seasons on 19 nutrigenetic traits. Highly significant (p ≤ 0.001) differences were found among all nutrigenetic traits of polyvoltine silkworm strains in the experimental groups. The nutritionally efficient polvoltine silkworm strains were resulted by utilizing nutrition consumption index and efficiency of conversion of ingesta/cocoon traits as the index. Higher nutritional efficiency conversions were found in the polyvoltine silkworm strains on efficiency of conversion of ingesta to cocoon and shell than control. Comparatively smaller consumption index, respiration, metabolic rate with superior relative growth rate, and quantum of food ingesta and digesta requisite per gram of cocoon and shell were shown; the lowest amount was in new polyvoltine strains compared to the control. Furthermore, based on the overall nutrigenetic traits utilized as index or ‘biomarkers’, three polyvoltine silkworm strains (RMG4, RMW2, and RMW3) were identified as having the potential for nutrition efficiency conversion. The data from the present study advances our knowledge for the development of nutritionally efficient silkworm breeds/hybrids and their effective commercial utilization in the sericulture industry.