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Adaptation by copy number variation increases insecticide resistance in fall armyworms

Abstract : Insecticide resistance is a major main challenge in pest control, and understanding its genetic basis is a key topic in agricultural ecology. Detoxification genes are well-known genetic elements that play a key role in adaptation to xenobiotics. The adaptive evolution of detoxification genes by copy number variations has been interpreted as a cause of insecticide resistance. However, the same pattern can be generated by the adaptation to host-plant defense toxins as well. In this study, we tested in fall armyworms (Lepidoptera Spodoptera frugiperda) if adaptation by copy number variation is the cause of the increased level of insecticide resistance from two geographic populations with different levels of resistance and two strains with different host plants. Following the generation of an assembly with chromosome-sized scaffolds (N50 = 13.2Mb), we observed that these two populations show a significant allelic differentiation of copy number variations, which is not observed between strains. In particular, a locus with almost complete allelic differentiation (Fst > 0.8) includes a cluster of P450 genes, which are well-known key players in detoxification. Detoxification genes are overrepresented in the genes with copy number variations, and the observed copy number variation appears to have beneficial effects in general. From this result, we concluded that copy number variation of detoxification genes in fall armyworms plays a key role in the insecticide resistance but not in the adaptation to host-plants, suggesting that the evolution of insecticide resistance may occur independently from host-plant adaptation.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, September 22, 2020 - 2:44:07 PM
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Ki Woong Nam, Sylvie Gimenez, Frederique Hilliou, Carlos A Blanco, Sabine Hänniger, et al.. Adaptation by copy number variation increases insecticide resistance in fall armyworms. 2020. ⟨hal-02945633⟩



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