Dual Biocontrol Potential of the Entomopathogenic Fungus, <i>Isaria javanica</i>, for Both Aphids and Plant Fungal Pathogens

<p>Dual biocontrol of both insects and plant pathogens has been reported for certain fungal entomopathogens, including <i>Beauveria bassiana</i> and <i>Lecanicillum</i> spp. In this study, we demonstrate, for the first time, the dual biocontrol potential of two fungal isolates identified by morphological and phylogenetic analyses as <i>Isaria javanica</i>. Both these isolates caused mortality in the greater wax moth, and hence can be considered entomopathogens. Spores of the isolates were also pathogenic to nymphs of the green peach aphid (<i>Myzus persicae</i>), with an LC<sub>50</sub> value of 10<sup>7</sup> spores/mL 4 days after inoculation and an LT<sub>50</sub> of 4.2 days with a dose of 10<sup>8</sup> spores/mL. <i>In vitro</i> antifungal assays also demonstrated a strong inhibitory effect on the growth of two fungi that are pathogenic to peppers, <i>Colletotrichum gloeosporioides</i> and <i>Phytophthora capsici</i>. These results indicate that <i>I. javanica</i> isolates could be used as novel biocontrol agents for the simultaneous control of aphids and fungal diseases, such as anthracnose and Phytophthora blight, in an integrated pest management framework for red pepper.</p>