190222 Louis 026 (permalink)
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Joe Louis, assistant professor of Entomology, is testing the resistance of aphids to various varieties of sorghum and corn. A wire is adhered to an aphid's back with conductive paint. The plant is given an electric charge. As the aphid sucks the sugars in the plant, the electric flow increases and is measured. On aphid-resistant plants, the current barely registers. Louis holds up a collection of leaves infested by corn-leaf aphids. Louis and his colleagues have found that spraying a corn plant with one of its own defensive compounds might reduce aphid colonization by as much as 30 percent. The lab setup is at left. February 22, 2019. Photo by Craig Chandler / University Communication.
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