Bio-Gene Technologies expands studies on their natural product Qcide, to include applications in crop protection and vector control.

Special Report: Bug-killer Bio-Gene Technology has expanded its brief to include vector control—that is, insects which spread disease—and crop protection for its natural product, Qcide.

Several new studies will be conducted to elaborate on the potential for Qcide in these market segments.

“Our discussions to date with many major players in the vector control segment have highlighted a significant interest in our natural product as an alternative for the control of mosquitoes,” Bio-Gene (ASX:BGT) CEO Richard Jagger said.

“Demonstrating the effectiveness of our natural product will enable us to now offer two products within each key market sector.

“Furthermore, the previous findings relating to the synergistic effects of Flavocide are very exciting, and we hope to see similar effects with Qcide. Ultimately this could make Qcide more efficacious and cost effective when used with other chemistries.”

Bigger studies

The collaboration with Purdue University in the US is expanding to include Qcide, a natural insecticide made from an oil extracted from a eucalyptus species grown in far North Queensland.

Work conducted previously at Purdue University on Flavocide exploring the efficacy against the Aedes aegypti mosquito, as well as the synergistic action when combined with other insecticides, will be repeated using Qcide.

“The need for new, safer products to control mosquitoes and other flying pests of public health, is great and it is a global one,” said Professor Catherine Hill from Purdue University.

“Within the next ten years, we must deliver new actives for continued control of resistant mosquitoes. Our studies with Flavocide suggest efficacy and promise as a combination product that would extend mosquito control.”

Over in Australia, the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) is focusing a study on combinations of Qcide with other natural products to create ‘knockdown sprays’ targeting flying insects.

“UTS will be exploring the synergistic effects of Qcide in combination with other natural compounds. Early observations suggest this could allow us to make highly efficient products to control a number of household flying pests such as mosquitoes and flies,” said Bio-Gene director of research and development Peter May.

And a study with James Cook University (JCU) in Queensland to improve extraction techniques of Qcide oil has garnered a $50,000 grant through the Australian Government’s Innovations Connections program.

JCU will conduct an engineering program in conjunction with Bio-Gene’s contract farmers to find effective ways to increase production from current and future plantations.

“Maximising the yield potential from each kilogram of bio-mass that is harvested, will help us to provide cost effective products,” Mr Jagger said.


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