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Riverside, CA, United States

Agency: Department of Agriculture | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 100.00K | Year: 2015

Semiochemicals, especially pheromones, are of critical importance to integrated pest and vector management. Some pheromones, however, are too expensive, costing over $50,000/kg. This makes them far too costly for many control agencies to use in aggressive management regimes, as the required quantities for effective formulations are high. The development of a synthetic process to convert low cost biomaterials into high value semiochemicals would be beneficial to several markets, including agriculture and vector management.The identification of a under utilized seed oil crop, Meadowfoam (Limnanthes alba), as a starting material for semiochemicals was the first step towards developing this synthetic pathway. Meadowfoam oil contains high percentages of 20- and 22-carbon chain fatty acids in addition to a Z-5-carboxylate moiety, both extremely rare in nature. Making it the perfect starting material for the synthesis of variety semiochemicals. The novel synthetic pathways we propose to develop will transform the $10/kg meadowfoam oil into high demand, high value, semiochemical components. Using meadowfoam oil will reduce the cost of pheromone manufacturing, resulting in downstream cost reductions to end users, allowing for integrated pest and vector management solutions for the control of a variety of important insects pests. Additionally, meadowfoam as a renewable crop is a 'greener' alternative to petroleum based products and will allow the meadowfoam industry to grow substantially.

Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: SMALL BUSINESS PHASE I | Award Amount: 150.00K | Year: 2012

This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I
project will develop a long lasting organic formulation to effectively manage and
suppress populations of mosquito vectors of disease. The banning of DDT and
other persistent mosquito larvicides several decades ago has created a major gap
in vector management that has yet to be effectively filled by generations of
environmentally friendly chemicals and formulations that followed. The
consequences are tangible to the human population worldwide. We are currently
experiencing more pain, suffering, and deaths from mosquito transmitted
diseases than when DDT was available. Biological larvicidal formulations have
been proven safe and effective in controlling mosquito larvae, with the caveat
that they have a very short field life which requires frequent reapplications to
sustain control, in turn making them too expensive for adoption by most areawide
vector control programs. Because of this, biological larvicidal formulations
are seldom used preventatively. This SBIR project will bridge this gap and
increase the longevity, and usability, of biological larvicides. Success will result in
direct mitigation of soil and waterways pollution commonly associated with
conventional pesticides for mosquito control.

The broader/commercial impacts of this research are, if
this SBIR project is successful, the development of a biological, long lasting
larvicidal formulation that will significantly change the way parasitic mosquitoes
are managed worldwide, making it much more effective, reducing disease and
suffering, and saving lives while significantly reducing non-target effects and
environmental pollution. This is a worldwide market opportunity of over

Agency: Department of Agriculture | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 460.00K | Year: 2011

Our Phase I research and development in laboratory bioassays, wind tunnel, caged trees, and small field trials, indicates that different approaches are needed to maximize contact of the moth with the source containing the insecticide. We found that optimizing an attract and kill formulation that actually attracts and kills the males, instead of disrupting their orientation, is a fine balancing act of different components (pheromone and insecticide dose and release rate) that affect the behavior of the male in very different ways. Our Phase I research and development demonstrated that it is possible to have the same results in fruit protection as the golden standard commercial mating disruption formulation when using the SPLAT BASE strategy with formulations containing 20% or less pheromone. It is clear that the development of formulations as proposed here could provide the best opportunity for success in effectively and economically controlling key Lepidopteran pests in pome fruit orchards and we aim to explore this breakthrough in understanding A & K through this SBIR project and to create an effective SPLAT BASE attract and kill line of products.

Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Defense Health Program | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 1.00M | Year: 2015

Protection of deployed ground forces from disease-carrying insects requires the immediate and safe use of insecticides. Currently, control products are too slow to manage target pests and are unrealistic solutions under battlefield conditions. Vector-borne diseases transmitted by insects, such as malaria, dengue and leishmaniasis, are increasing worldwide and are more of a threat to our military forces today than they were three decades ago. Disease transmitting insects are becoming resistant to an increasing number of public health insecticides with minimal research and development underway to search for replacements. The objective of Phase I research focused on the development of VECTRAX prototypes as attractive sugar bait formulations mixed with a toxicant that effectively kills target vectors without harming non-target animals. The results of this SBIR Phase I project have been remarkable, and VECTRAX is proving to be a viable solution for vector control. We will continue the development of optimal Attract and Kill (A&K) VECTRAX formulations targeted for disease spreading mosquitos, filth flies and sand flies. VECTRAX is designed to be a safe, effective and easily transportable product that will fill a significant gap in our ability to stop or prevent nuisance biting and disease transmission during military operations.

Agency: Department of Agriculture | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 100.00K | Year: 2015

Ixodes scapularis is a species of tick, commonly referred to as deer tick, it is of major medical and veterinary significance throughout the northeastern United States due to its capacity to transmit tick borne diseases like Lyme disease and several other zoonotic pathogens. The increasing incidence of transmission of these tick-borne disease, in both animals and humans necessitates a control product to manage deer ticks before they are able to harm both animal and human populations. ISCA Technologies will research and develop SPLAT® TK an attract and kill (A&K) formulation designed to target all active stages of the deer tick. Attraction to SPLAT TK blended with an acaricide component will result in the death or significant debilitation of questing (human or animal seeking) ticks within the area of treatment.Following the optimization of the SPLAT TK product in a laboratory setting, small scale field trials in areas with a high density of deer ticks will be conducted with prototype SPLAT TK formulations. Deer tick surveillance will be employed during the field trial to determine the presence or absence of deer ticks following SPLAT TK treatments and compared to an untreated area. If fewer ticks are observed in the SPLAT TK areas then will suggest that the SPLAT TK treatments are negatively affecting the deer tick population. These results will then be published and presented at various pest control meetings and in particular revealed to vector control agencies.This project hopes to not only to safeguard the health of human and animal residents of our nation's rural communities, but also to expand opportunities for economic growth within these communities by bolstering such industries as rural tourism, camping, hiking, fishing, and agri-tourism, all of which are currently hampered by the lack of viable control options for disease-carrying ticks. This innovative, effective, and environmentally-sustainable approach to tick control will be developed for application in livestock, consumer, public health, parks and recreation, and forestry pest management programs.

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