Crop Biotech Update

Field Performance of GM Egyptian Cotton Varieties Expressing Bt Toxins Against Bollworms

June 22, 2012

Hassan Farag Dahi, a researcher from the Agricultural Research Center in Giza, Egypt, evaluated the field performance of some Egyptian cotton varieties (Giza 80, 90 and 89) that are genetically engineered (GE) to produce Bt genes to control pink and spiny bollworms. The GE cotton varieties were developed by transferring Cry1Ac and Cry2Ab from Bacillus thuringiensis to American cotton using a gene particle gun then crossed the Bt American cotton and the Egyptian cotton varieties.

Results showed that in the three cotton varieties studied, the maximum percentages of infestation by pink bollworms and spiny bollworms were significantly higher in non-Bt cotton varieties than in Bt plants. On the other hand, the artificial infestation for the three cotton varieties by the pink bollworm and spiny bollworm neonate larvae at laboratory showed that the infestation percentage was zero for Giza 80, 90 and 89 Bt progenies compared to 76 -100 % for Giza 80, 90 and 89 non-Bt varieties.

Read the abstract at