Bt corn “stumbles” on its way to total pest resistance

January 6, 2005: Once touted as the end all be all of pest management, Bt corn is registering some cracks in its armor. Recent studies by leading land grant universities have recorded “stumbles” on root rating evaluations.

While Bt control remains effective on the corn borer, it has been less successful at killing rootworm. Researchers at the University of Illinois were forced to give the genetically modified variety an unacceptable root rating of 3.15 during a September evaluation. Purdue University researchers also reported a “stumble” by YieldGard Rootworm hybrid in an evaluation this year but maintained the product is typically reliable.

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