Seyed Mohammad Ahsaei has joined to the High Pressure Processes Group (HPPG) at the University of Valladolid as a visiting researcher. He comes from Tehran University as a PhD student in Plant Protection Department. During the next months he will work in the project “Preparation of micro-nanoencapsulated essential oils from Rosmarinus officinalis and Zataria multiflora and their effect on Tribolium confusum and Callosobruchus maculatus”, on the development of micro-nanoencapsulations of essential oils suitable to their application as pesticides as a part of his PhD work. Seyed Mohammad obtained his Msc in Agricultural Entomology on 2013 at Tehran University in the field of Insect Physiology.
Stored foods are prone to postharvest loss in quality and quantity due to infestation by different groups of insects. Control of these insects relies heavily on the use of synthetic insecticides such as organophosphates, pyrethroids and fumigants (mainly phosphine and methyl bromide). These chemicals are simple and cost-effective, but their massive use has caused problems such as resistant behaviour and environmental pollution with negative side effects on human health and on arthropods, disrupting biological control. In order to reduce the effects of conventional synthetic pesticides, biopesticides based on essential oils (EOs) appear to be a complementary or alternative method in crop production and integrated pest management. EOs showed toxic, repellent and antifeedent effects on stored product insects. Despite these promising properties, problems related with the EO volatility, poor water solubility, and aptitude for oxidation have to be resolved before they are used as an alternative pest control system. Nanoformulation of the EOs could solve these problems protecting them from degradation and losses by evaporation, achieving a controlled release of these products and facilitating their handling. Furthermore, this kind of formulation is expected to be more effective than the bulk substances. On the other hand, it has been found that pesticide micro-nanoformulation showed less toxicity towards non-target organisms compared with bulk or commercial formulations and therefore a higher specificity was observed.
The aim of this study is to obtain and characterize polymeric (soybean lecithin OSA-modified starch or b-glucan) nanoparticles containing essential oils (EOs-NPs) and to evaluate different biological activities against adults of some stored product pests compared with the EOs alone.