Jan 13, 2017
LifeGard WG biological plant activator registered by EPA

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has registered LifeGard WG, a foliar-applied biological plant activator, for use on potatoes, sugar beets, fruiting vegetables, pecans and other specialty agricultural crops to control diseases.

Introduced by the biopesticide company Certis USA, LifeGard is a naturally occurring bacterium that triggers an induced systemic resistance (ISR) response in plants. LifeGard is NOP Approved and OMRI Listed, it is residue exempt, it has a 4-hour REI, can be applied the day of harvest and the product is bee safe, according to the company.

The active ingredient of LifeGard is a naturally occurring bacterium (Bacillus mycoides isolate J) shown by discoverer professor Barry Jacobsen, Ph.D. of Montana State University to trigger a plant’s natural immune response to pathogenic fungi, bacteria and viruses in the phenomenon known as ISR. As Jacobsen explained, plants respond to initial detection of potentially pathogenic microorganisms by “switching on” resistance genes, causing a cascade of metabolic responses to limit infection and disease development. While some microbial biofungicides have been reported to also have moderate ISR activity, LifeGard is unique in that it works entirely as a microbial ISR activator with no direct antagonistic effect on plant pathogens, according to Certis. LifeGard induces the same genetic resistance pathway as the class of chemical ISR inducers known as benzothiadiazoles, but for longer periods and with lower risk of phytotoxicity, according to the company.

LifeGard has been found to be compatible with a wide range of pesticides, including triazole, EDBC and QoI class fungicides and a wide range of insecticides, making it ideal for use in IPM programs, according to the company. Certis USA found disease control to be equal to commercial standards when LifeGard is used in combination with low rates of fungicides or in alternating programs.

Certis USA partnered with Montana State University-Bozeman and Montana BioAgriculture Inc. of Missoula, Montana, in a global license agreement to develop, manufacture and commercialize the LifeGard technology worldwide on a wide range of crops and diseases.






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