Biological control is often classified as either a classical or inundative. Here the main emphasis will be on the use of agricultural biological products or biopesticides (an inundative approach). As these products are routinely used as an applied product in agriculture and horticulture to manage pests, they are registered through the Australian Agricultural and Veterinary Medicines Association (APVMA). Biopesticides have been variously defined, but herein will be defined as group 3 of the APVMA Agricultural Biological Products definition as containing microbial agents.
In this presentation a number of pathogen/host systems will be used to illustrate how an understanding of genomics can be used to improve our understanding of how biopesticides can be improved and used in Australian agriculture. Examples will include research on management of soil insects (using species of Metarhizium), invasive snail species (using Bacillus sp and entomopathogenic nematodes) and the selection of bacterial species to be used in the management of stem rot of canola (caused by Sclerotinia sclerotiorum).
The presentation will conclude with discussion around the future use of genomics (and the other complimentary ‘omic sciences) to improve plant disease management using biological control in Australia.