Latest Resistance management for sustainable agriculture and improved public health

Tomato leafminer

Tuta absoluta

T. absoluta is a pest of great economic importance in a number of countries. Its primary host is tomato, although potato, aubergine, common bean, and various wild solanaceous plants are also suitable hosts. T. absoluta is characterized by high reproduction potential. Each female may lay up to 300 eggs and 10-12 generations can be produced each year.  In tomato, it attacks all plant parts and crop developmental stages, although the larvae prefer apical buds, tender new leaflets, flowers, and  green fruits and can cause up to 100% crop destruction.

Originally from Latin America, T. absoluta has recently spread to Europe, North Africa and the Middle East.  Given its aggressive nature and crop destruction potential, it has quickly become a key pest of concern in these new geographies.

Tomato leafminer resistance profile

Pest like T. absoluta, with high reproduction capacity and short generation cycle, are at higher risk of developing resistance to insecticides. This risk increases significantly when management of the pest relies exclusively on chemical control with a limited number of effective insecticides available. This situation usually leads to increase in the frequency of use and thus, increase in the selection pressure.   In fact, field populations of T. absoluta resistant to a range of mode of action groups are already known from L. America countries, where this has been a key pest for decades.

Known resistances: Avermectins, Milbemycins – Group 6 Pyrethroids – Group 3A Nereistoxin analogues – Group 14 Benzoylureas – Group 15 Indoxacarb – Group 22A

Species Distribution Chemical class Mechanisms
Tuta absoluta EU – Italy, Greece Avermectins-Milbemycins (6)
Tuta absoluta EU – Italy, Greece Pyrethroids-Pyrethrins (3A)
Tuta absoluta EU – Italy, Greece Nereistoxin analogues (14)
Tuta absoluta EU – Italy, Greece Benzoylureas (15)
Tuta absoluta EU – Italy, Greece Diamides (28)
Tuta absoluta EU – Italy, Greece Indoxacarb (22A)
Tuta absoluta Middle East- Israel Diamides (28)
Tuta absoluta Brazil, UK Spinosyns (5)

Key tomato leafminer resources


Title Year Author(s) Publisher
Ryanodine receptor point mutations confer diamide insecticide resistance in tomato leafminer, Tuta absoluta (Lepidoptera: Gelechiidae) Vol. 80, pp. 11-20. DOI: 2017 Roditakis E, Steinbach D, Moritz G, Vasakis E, Stavrakaki M, Llias A, Garcia-Vidal L, del Rosario Martínez-Aguirre M, Bielza P, Morou E, Silva JE, Silva WM, Siqueira HAA, Iqbal S, Troczka BJ, Williamson MS, Bass C, Tsagkarakou A, Nauen R Insect Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
A four-year survey on insecticide resistance and likelihood of chemical control failure for tomato leaf miner Tuta absoluta in the European/Asian region pp. 1-15, DOI: 10.1007/s10340-017-0900-x 2017 Roditakis E, Vasakis E, Garcia-Vidal L, del Rosario Martínez-Aguirre M, Rison JL, Haxaire-Lutun MO, Nauen R, Tsagkarakou A, Bielza P Journal of Pest Science
Mutation (G275E) of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor alpha-6 subunit is associated with high levels of resistance to spinosyns in Tuta absoluta (Meyrick)(Lepidoptera:Gelechiidae) Vol. 131, 1-8, DOI: 10.1016/j.pestbp.2016.02.006 2016 Silva WM, Berger M, Bass C, Williamson MS, Moura DM, Ribeiro LM, Siqueira HA Pesticide Biochemistry and Physiology
First report of Tuta absoluta resistance to diamide insecticides Vol. 88 (1) pp. 9-16 2015 Roditakis E, Vasakis E, Grispou M, Stavrakaki M, Nauen R, Gravouil M, Bassi A Journal of Pest Science
Tuta absoluta: Investigating resistance to key insecticides and seeking alternative IPM compatible products Project No. PE 028 2015 Jacobson RJ, Bass C Agriculture and Horticultural Development Board
Identification of mutations associated with pyrethroid resistance in the voltage-gated sodium channel of the tomato leaf miner (Tuta absoluta) 2012 Haddi K, Berger M, Bielza P, Cifuentes D, Field LM, Gorman K, Rapisarda C, Williamson MS, Bass C Insect Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Abamectin resistance and synergism in Brazilian populations of Tuta absoluta (Meyrick) (Lepidoptera: Gelechiidae) Vol. 47 (4), pp. 247-251. DOI: 10.1080/09670870110044634 2010 Guedes RNC, Fragoso DB, Magalhaes LC, Siqueira HAA International Journal of Pest Management
EPPO A2 List of pests recommended for regulation as quarantine pests (Tuta Absoluta) EPPO/OEPP Global Database EPPO/OEPP

The information provided is based on literature reviews and as such IRAC cannot guarantee or be held accountable for the accuracy of the reports.

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