Available Technology

Bioactive Peptides Having Insecticide Activity

Novel bioactive peptides were discovered using a receptor screening process. The peptides are structurally very different from the natural ligand(s) for this receptor. Injection of the novel peptides into fire ants (our model system) resulted in mortality. Interestingly, several peptides displayed similar mortality effects when fed to ants in a sucrose solution, thus, a bait-station system could be used as a novel control method to add to the fire ant integrated management tool box. Fire ants are an annual 6 billion dollar problem in the U.S. The screening method can be applied to a wide variety of receptors and insect pests, providing versatility and likely target specificity


•  The novel peptide ligands show mortality effects when fed to fire ants – a bait formulations and fire ant control
•  Peptide selection method is readily adapted to other target receptors and insect pests
•  The control method is targeted rather than general.
•  The peptides are expected to be an environmentally-friendly pest management tool



•  Bioactive peptides discovered can be used directly and/or formulated to control the fire ant and other insect pests. 
•  The technology for fire ant model, but the invention can be applied to any insect pest species.
Patent Number: 
9,771,393 (244.12) + 10,017,538 (135.17)
Internal Laboratory Ref #: 
244.12 + 135.17
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