Bug killer Bio-Gene is safe in water: study
Health & Biotech
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Special Report: New study finds Bio-Gene insecticide is non-toxic to water-based plants and animals.
Bio-Gene Technology (ASX: BGT) has gone swimming after preliminary aquatic eco-toxicity studies found the active constituent contained in the company’s key insecticide is non-toxic to fish, plants, and underwater insects.
The agtech development company, which is enabling the next generation of novel insecticides to address insecticide resistance, was investigating the impact of Flavocide on three aquatic species.
The studies, using the active ingredient flavesone, were performed on three aquatic species, Poecilia reticulata (Guppy), Daphnia magna (water flea) and Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata (freshwater algae).
These represent key target species to indicate the environmental impact from the introduction of a pesticide to an aquatic environment.
“These preliminary results are very positive as they indicate a further level of de-risking of our proprietary technology on the path towards commercialisation,” said Peter May, executive director of R&D for Bio-Gene.
“Our understanding of dose response and sensitivity towards these aquatic species helps us to establish the safety profile of Flavocide when used in outdoor situations such as mosquito control programs undertaken in aquatic environments.
“The results indicate that Flavocide has low toxicity to these key representative aquatic species and may therefore be safely used in outdoor mosquito control programs.”
These studies are key to further profiling and understanding the potential hazards posed by products containing flavesone when released into the environment, with particular relevance to outdoor uses such as for mosquito control and crop protection.
The studies showed no adverse effects in any species from exposure to Flavocide at the highest doses tested, including the maximum test dose prescribed by the regulatory authorities.
Subject to the outcome of further definitive testing, the preliminary data indicates that flavesone would not have a negative impact on non-target aquatic organisms and would fall within a favourable category of environmental hazard as defined by the regulatory authorities.
Bio-Gene says the data will help with dose setting for the next stage of more definitive acute eco-tox studies that will include testing in non-target terrestrial and aquatic species representative of additional organisms that are likely to be exposed to Flavocide products.