The bacteria Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. israelensis and Bacillus sphaericus produce insecticidal toxins used to control mosquito larvae throughout the world. Unfortunately, there are few alternative insecticides with similar activity and environmental safety, which may limit the long-term success of these insecticides. Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. jegathesan is another bacterium with toxins that are active against mosquitoes and has potential for development as a commercial product. B. t. subsp. jegathesan would be ineffective if cross-resistance was detected or if treated mosquito populations evolved resistance. B. t. subsp. jegathesan was evaluated for its potential for selecting insecticide resistance in Culex quinquefasciatus Say. Susceptibility changes in mosquitoes selected with the wild-type strain were compared with susceptibility changes in mosquitoes selected with Cry11B, a component toxin of B. t. subsp. jegathesan. Resistance was detected in generation 18 in the Cry11B-selected colony, reached a maximum of 38-fold, and was present through generation 40. The B. t. subsp. jegathesan-selected colony evolved 13-fold resistance in generation 22, but resistance declined to 2.3-fold in generation 26 and remained low throughout the study. Cry11B-selected mosquitoes showed no significant resistance to the wild-type bacterium, whereas B. t. subsp. jegathesan-selected mosquitoes expressed significant resistance to Cry11B. Both colonies displayed cross-resistance to component toxins of B. t. subsp. israelensis, but they lacked cross-resistance to that wild-type strain. The patterns of resistance and cross-resistance in this study are consistent with the patterns previously observed in mosquitoes selected with B. t. subsp. israelensis and suggest that B. t. subsp. jegathesan might also be at low risk for resistance.
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