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Development of Nanoformulations containing Essential Oils to control nematodes in Agriculture

Grant number: 23/05321-1
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Master
Effective date (Start): November 01, 2023
Effective date (End): February 28, 2025
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Biochemistry - Chemistry of Macromolecules
Principal Investigator:Leonardo Fernandes Fraceto
Grantee:Giovanna Moura Silva
Host Institution: Instituto de Ciência e Tecnologia. Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Sorocaba. Sorocaba , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:17/21004-5 - Agriculture, micro/nanotechnology and environment: from evaluation of the mechanisms of action to studies of transport and toxicity, AP.TEM


Plant parasitic nematodes (PPNs) are a major threat to the production of many economically important crops, causing crop losses estimated at US$157 billion annually, representing 12.3% of crop losses. The conventional strategy to control NPPs has been the use of pesticides and anthelmintic drugs, which are chemically synthesized compounds with nematicidal activity. However, these practices have a negative impact on the environment, as they affect the beneficial soil microbiota and can leave toxic residues in agricultural crops and animal products. More sustainable alternatives, such as the use of biopesticides, such as essential oils (EOs) extracted from various plants, have been widely studied. However, EOs have some limitations, such as volatility, low aqueous solubility and degradation by environmental factors, which hinders their wide use in the control of PPNs. In order to control the aforementioned problems, the association of these compounds with nanotechnology has been shown to be efficient and promising. Thus, the master's project aims to develop responsive stimulus formulations together with essential oils for the control of nematodes in agriculture, as well as their physical-chemical characterization and stability, encapsulation efficiency and effectiveness of nematode control. The dimension of this project lies in the need to produce more efficient ways of controlling agricultural pests, as well as less harmful to the environment. Therefore, the development of value-added systems for pest control based on sustained release systems for more effective and less impactful EOs compared to conventional systems currently used to combat pests in agriculture.

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