Bacillus thuringiensis

Bacillus thuringiensis Berliner

A Gram-positive bacterium that contains toxic crystals which kill insects (mostly Lepidoptera when ingested. The bacterium, and its many strains or serotypes (all usually abbreviated to Bt) are in wide commercial use and has been used for many insecticidal preparations (e.g. Dipel). Bacillus thuringiensis var. israelensis was found in Israel and is being applied against the the larvae of aquatic mosquitoes and blackflies (Simuliidae) (Diptera). The genes expressing the toxic material have been inserted by molecular manipulations into various plants (like maize and potato and serve to protect these crops against pests.