Confirmatory test of gamma irradiation against the larvae and pupae of Helicoverpa assulta (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) in paprika

Park, Jeong Sun;Jeong, Su Yeon;Kim, Iksoo

  • Received : 2015.11.24
  • Accepted : 2015.11.25
  • Published : 2015.12.31


The oriental tobacco budworm, Helicoverpa assulta (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae), is classified as a quarantine pest that must be controlled for the exportation of Korean paprika to the USA. We performed a confirmatory test of gamma irradiation against the last-instar larvae and pupae of H. assulta in paprika. Previous, small-scale gamma irradiation at a dose of 100 Gy to the last-instar larvae allowed emergence of adults, though they were abnormal, but 200 Gy prevented adult emergence completely. For pupae, irradiation of 5- to 6-day-old pupae with 300 Gy prevented normal emergence completely. To gather confirmatory data applicable to phytosanitary quarantine regulations, larvae and pupae were placed inside paprika in a box and were irradiated with 200 Gy and 300 Gy, respectively. After irradiation with 200 Gy (measured doses 170-199 Gy) of 2,186 individuals of the last-instar larvae, 10.84% survived, but either formed abnormal pupae (7.57%) or died during the pupal stage (3.27%), resulting in no emergence of normal adults. For pupae, the dose of 300 Gy (measured doses 276-319 Gy) given to 1,200 pupae allowed 10.75% to survive and 9.17% to emerge with deformity. However, 1.58% of irradiated pupae emerged normally, requiring an increased dose for complete prevention of normal emergence. Subsequently, an increased dose of 400 Gy (measured doses 340-402 Gy) to 1,005 pupae allowed 88.35% to emerge, but all emerged with deformity. Thus, irradiation treatment with a minimum dose of 400 Gy will provide quarantine security for all premature H. assulta in exported paprika.


oriental tobacco budworm;Helicoverpa assulta;paprika;gamma radiation;quarantine;phytosanitary treatment


  1. Hallman GJ, Nisperos-Carriedo MO, Baldwin EA, Campbell CA (1994) Mortality of Caribbean fruit fly (Diptera: Tephritidae) immatures in coated fruits. J Econ Entomol 87, 752-757.
  2. Hill DS (1983) Agricultural Insect Pests of the Tropics and Their Control, 2nd edn. Cambridge Press, Cambridge.
  3. Mansour M (2003) Gamma irradiation as a quarantine treatment for apples infested by codling moth (Lep., Tortricidae). J Appl Entomol 127, 137-141.
  4. Park JS, Lee JY, Jeong SY, Ahn SJ, Kim I (2015) Effects of gamma radiation on different developmental stages of the oriental tobacco budworm, Helicoverpa assulta (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae). Entomol Res 45, 110-115.
  5. QIA (2014) Import-export phytosanitary treatments regulations. Animal and Plant Quarantine and Inspection Agency Notification (No. 2014-35). Animal and Plant Quarantine and Inspection Agency, Republic of Korea.
  6. Zhan G, Li B, Gao M, Liu B, Wang Y, Liu T, Ren L (2014) Phytosanitary irradiation of peach fruit moth (Lepidoptera: Carposinidae) in apple fruits. Radiat Phys Chem 103, 153-157.
  7. Alpen EN (1998) Radiation biophysics. Academic, San Diego, CA.
  8. Earle NW, Simmons LA, Nilakhe SS (1979) Laboratory studies of sterility and competitiveness of boll weevils irradiated in an atmosphere of nitrogen, carbon dioxide, or air. J Econ Entomol 72, 687-691.
  9. Follett PA, Lower RA (2000) Irradiation to ensure quarantine security for Cryptophlebia spp. (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) in sapindaceous fruits from Hawaii. J Econ Entomol 93, 1848-1854.

Cited by

  1. Effects of X-ray irradiation on development and reproduction of the oriental tobacco budworm, Helicoverpa assulta (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) vol.47, pp.4, 2017,