Colorado potato beetle pesticide resistance: validation of genetic tests for identification

Célia Bordier

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Contact Célia Bordier


The Colorado potato beetle (Leptinotarsa ​​decemlineata), by causing plant defoliation, can cause an 80% yield loss in affected fields and thus significantly impact the sector. The most widespread means of control currently is the use of synthetic insecticides. Knowing that the Colorado potato beetle has already shown resistance to 56 active ingredients, it is among the 10 most resistant insects in the world and it becomes difficult to control its populations. This project therefore proposes to establish bioassay protocols to assess the resistance of several Quebec populations, to then determine the molecular origin of these resistances and ultimately transfer a reliable detection tool to the Expertise Laboratory and of Phytoprotection Diagnostics (LEDP).


The main objective of this project is to combine an applied approach using bioassays and a fundamental approach using molecular biology to determine resistance markers and thus equip the LEDP to diagnose resistance of wild populations.

The specific objectives are as follows:

  1. Establish the discriminating dose resulting in 90% mortality in a susceptible Colorado potato beetle population for 12 pesticides.
  2. Validate the use of bioassays in the determination of resistance.
  3. Assess the resistance of wild Quebec populations.
  4. Determine the genes involved in the resistance mechanism of wild populations, using a molecular biology technique.
  5. Transfer the methodology to the Phytoprotection Expertise and Diagnosis Laboratory of MAPAQ.

From 2021 to 2025

Project duration

Market gardening

Activity areas

Pest, weed, and disease control



This project is funded by the ministère de l'Agriculture, des Pêcheries et de l'Alimentation under the Prime-Vert program.

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