Dr. Blair Siegfried

blair's picture
Charles Bessey Professor of Entomology
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Department of Entomology
312A Entomology Hall
Lincoln, NE
Phone: (402) 472-8714
FAX: (402) 472-4687


80% Research, 20% Teaching


  1. B.S. in Biology, Lock Haven University, 1981
  2. M.S. in Entomology, University of Florida, 1984
  3. Ph.D. in Entomology, Pennsylvania State University, 1989


Professional Responsibilities and Activities: My research program is directed at quantifying the ecological risks of pesticide use and advancing our
understanding of insecticide resistance evolution. Our recent focus has been on transgenic maize hybrids that
express insecticidal toxins from Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt). We are currently attempting to increase genomic
resources of important insect pests that are targeted by transgenic Bt maize through transcriptome
sequencing of midgut tissue which is the target site for Bt toxins. Our goal is to develop the resources for
identifying changes in gene expression associated with toxin exposure and with resistance evolution. We are
also actively pursuing methods to achieve gene silencing by RNA interference (RNAi) in order to elucidate gene
function, identify and validate novel target sites, and to examine the potential for RNAi to serve as a direct
pest management tool. We believe that this work will provide a gateway for improved resistance detection, for
quantifying the effect of resistance genes on reproductive fitness and ultimately, for improving our
understanding of the insect midgut as a novel and safe insecticide target site. While much of my research is focused on insecticide resistance evolution, we have also been involved in a
number of projects to document effects of pesticide contamination on non-target organisms. Most recently, I
have begun an active collaboration with our apiculture specialist here at the University of Nebraska (Dr. Marion
Ellis) to investigate the role of in-hive pesticides used for controlling parasitic Varroa mites in explaining
widespread losses of honey bee colonies across the U.S. and Canada.


Courses Taught:
  • Insecticide Toxicology (Entomology 820): A study of the principles of toxicology as they relate to
    insecticides and insect pest species. Emphasis on insecticide classification, mode of action, metabolism and
    environmental consequences of insecticide use. This course is also delivered on-line.
  • Toxins in the Environment (Entomology 300): An introduction to the principles of toxicology as they apply
    to environmental contaminants, emphasizing agrochemicals, but also including industrial and naturally
    occurring chemicals.


Publication Summary: 128 refereed journal articles; 8 reviews/book chapters; 16 refereed abstracts; 12 technical reports, and 6
extension articles. Recent Publications:
  • Magalhaes, L.C., B.W. French, T.E. Hunt, and B.D. Siegfried. 2007. Baseline susceptibility of western corn
    rootworm (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) to clothianidin. J. Appl. Entomol. 131: 251-255.
  • Londoño, D.K., H.A.A. Siqueira, H. Wang, G. Sarath, M.J. Lydy, and B.D. Siegfried. 2007. Cloning and
    expression of an atrazine inducible cytochrome P450, Cyp4G33, from Chironomus tentans (Diptera:
    Chironomidae). Pestic. Biochem. Physiol. 89: 104-110. http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/usdaarsfacpub/44/
  • Sayed, A., E.R. Nekl, H.A.A. Siqueira, H. Wang, R.H. ffrench-Constant, M. Bagley, and B.D. Siegfried. 2007.
    A novel cadherin-like gene from western corn rootworm, Diabrotica virgifera virgifera (Coleoptera:
    Chrysomelidae), larval midgut tissue. Insect Biochem. Molec. Biol. 16: 591-600.
  • Siegfried, B.D., T. Spencer, T., A.L. Crespo, N.P. Storer, G.P. Head, E.D. Owens, and D. Guyer. 2007. Ten
    years of monitoring for Bt resistance in the European corn borer: What we know, what we don't know and
    what we can do better. Amer. Entomol. 53: 208-214.
  • Crespo, A.L.B., T.A. Spencer, E. Nekl, and B.D. Siegfried. 2008. Comparison and validation of methods to
    quantify Cry1Ab from Bacillus thuringiensis for standardization of insect bioassays. Appl. Environ. Microbiol.
    74: 130-135. http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/entomologyfacpub/68/
  • Alves, A.P., W.J. Allgeier, and B.D. Siegfried. 2008. Effects of the synergist S,S,S - tributyl
    phosphorotrithioate on indoxacarb toxicity and metabolism in the European corn borer, Ostrinia nubilalis
    (Hübner). Pestic. Biochem. Physiol 90: 26-30. http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/entomologyfacpub/75/
  • Blanco, C.A., N.P. Storer, C.A. Abel, R. Jackson, R. Leonard, J.D. Lopez, G. Payne, B.D. Siegfried, T.
    Spencer, and A.P. Teran-Vargas. 2008. Baseline susceptibility of tobacco budworm (Lepidoptera:
    Noctuidae) to Cry1F toxin from Bacillus thuringiensis. J. Econ. Entomol. 101: 168-173.
  • Pereira, E.J.G., B.A. Lang, N.P. Storer, and B.D. Siegfried. 2008. Selection for Cry1F resistance in the
    European corn borer and cross resistance to other Cry toxins. Entomol. Exper. Appl. 126: 115-121.
  • Pereira, E.J.G., N.P. Storer, and B.D. Siegfried. 2008. Inheritance of Cry1F resistance in laboratory-
    selected European corn borer and its survival on transgenic corn expressing the Cry1F toxin. Bull. Entomol.
    Research 98: 621-629. http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/entomologyfacpub/166/
  • Nowatzki, T.M., S.A. Lefko, R.R. Binning, S.D. Thompson, T.A. Spencer, and B.D. Siegfried. 2008. Validation
    of a novel resistance monitoring technique for corn rootworm (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) and Event
    DAS-59122-7 maize. J. Appl. Entomol. 132: 177-188.
  • Magalhaes, L.C., B.W. French, T.E. Hunt, and B.D. Siegfried. 2008. Development of methods to evaluate
    susceptibility of soybean aphid to imidacloprid and thiamethoxam at lethal and sublethal concentrations.
    Entomol. Exp. Appl. 128: 330-336. http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/entomologyfacpub/151/
  • Meihls, L.N., M. L. Higdon, B.D. Siegfried, N.J. Miller, T.W. Sappington, M.R. Ellersieck, T.A. Spencer, and B.E.
    Hibbard. 2008. Rapid evolution of resistance to Bt corn by western corn rootworm: evidence for multiple
    resistance mechanisms? Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. 49: 19177-19182.
  • Ciosi, M., S. Toepfer, H. Li, T. Haye, U. Kuhlmann, H. Wang, B. Siegfried, and T. Guillemaud. 2009.
    European populations of Diabrotica virgifera virgifera are resistant to aldrin but not to methyl-parathion.
    J. Appl. Entomol. 133: 307-314. http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/cgi-bin/fulltext/121531683/PDFSTART
  • Magalhaes, L.C., T.E. Hunt, and B.D. Siegfried. 2009. Efficacy of Neonicotinoid seed treatments to reduce
    soybean aphid populations under field and controlled conditions in Nebraska. J. Econ. Entomol. 102:
  • Prasifka, J.R., R.L. Hellmich, D.V. Sumerford, and B.D. Siegfried. 2009. Bacillus thuringiensis resistance
    alleles influence European corn borer (Lepidoptera: Crambidae) larval behavior following exposure to
    Cry1Ab. J. Econ. Entomol. 102: 781-786.
  • Crespo, A.L.B., T. Spencer, A.P. Alves, R.L. Hellmich, E.E. Blankenship, L.C. Magalhaes, and B.D. Siegfried.
    2009. On-plant survival and inheritance of resistance to Cry1Ab toxin from Bacillus thuringiensis in a field-
    derived strain of European corn borer, Ostrinia nubilalis. Pest Manag. Sci. 10: 1071-1081.
  • Bel, Y., H.A.A. Siqueira, B.D. Siegfried, J. Ferre, and B. Escriche. 2009. Variability in
    the cadherin gene in Ostrinia nubilalis selected for Cry1Ab resistance. Insect Molec. Biol.39: 218-223.
  • Coates, B.S., D.V. Sumerford, K.S. Kim, N.J. Miller, T.W. Sappington, B.D. Siegfried, and L.C. Lewis. 2009.
    Comparative performance of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) and microsatellite markers for
    population genetic analysis. Heredity. 100: 556-564.
  • Prasifika, J.R., R.L. Hellmich, A.L.B. Crespo, B.D. Siegfried, and D.W. Onsad. 2009. Video-tracking and
    on-plant tests show Cry1Ab resistance influences behavior and survival of neonate Ostrinia nubilalis
    following exposure to Bt maize. J. Insect Behav. DOI 10.1007/s10905-009-9190-3.
  • Spomer, N.A. S.T. Kamble, and B.D. Siegfried. 2009. Bioavailability of chlorantraniliprole and indoxacarb to
    eastern subterranean termites (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) in various soils. J. Econ. Entomol. 102:
  • Khajuria, C., Y.C. Zhu, M. Chen, L.L. Buschman, R.A. Higgins, J. Yao, A.L.B. Crespo, B.D. Siegfried, S.
    Muthukrishnan, and K.Y. Zhu. 2009. Expressed sequence tags from larval gut of the European corn borer
    (Ostrinia nubilalis): Exploring candidate gene potential involved in Bacillus thuringiensis toxicity and
    resistance. BCM Genomics doi:10.1186/1471-2164-10-286.
  • Hong Chen, Blair D. Siegfried, Naizhong Chen and Yin Wang. 2009. Advances in stress resistance and
    control of the western corn rootworm, Diabrotica virgifera virgifera. Plant Protection, 35(6): 1-11. (in Chinese
    with English abstract) http://www.plantprotection.ac.cn/qikan/manage/wenzhang/20090602.pdf
  • Miller, N.J., T. Guillemaud, R. Giordano, B.D. Siegfried, M.E. Gray, L.J. Meinke and T.W. Sappington. 2009.
    Genes, gene flow and adaptation of Diabrotica virgifera virgifera. J. Agric. Forest Entomol. 11: 47-60.
  • Pereira, E.J.G., H.A.A. Siqueira, M. Zhuang, N.P. Storer, and B.D. Siegfried. 2010. Studies on the
    mechanism of Cry1F resistance in laboratory-selected European corn borer (Lepidoptera: Crambidae). J.
    Invert. Pathol 103: 1-7.
  • Pereira, E.J.G., N.P. Storer, and B.D. Siegfried. 2011. Fitness Costs of Cry1F Resistance in Laboratory-
    Selected European Corn Borer (Lepidoptera: Crambidae). J. Appl. Entomol. 135: 1-6.
  • Gaspers, C., B.D. Siegfried, T. Spencer, A.P. Alves, N.P. Storer, I. Schuphan, and S. Eber. 2011.
    Susceptibility of European and North American populations of the European corn borer to the Cry1F
    insecticidal protein. J. Appl. Entomol. 135: 7-16.
  • Stamm, M., Baxendale, F.P., Heng-Moss, T.M., B.D. Siegfried, A. Blankenship, and R. Gaussoin. 2011.
    Dose-Response relationships of imidacloprid, thiamethoxam, and clothianidin to Blissus occiduus
    (Hemiptera: Blissidae). J. Econ. Entomol. 104: 205-210. http://www.bioone.org/doi/pdf/10.1603/EC10268
  • Crespo, A.L.B., A. Rodrigo-Simón, H.A.A. Siqueira, E.J.G. Pereira, J. Ferre, and B.D. Siegfried. 2011. Cross-
    resistance and mechanism of resistance to Cry1Ab toxin from Bacillus thuringiensis in a field-derived strain
    of European corn borer, Ostrinia nubilalis. J. Invert. Pathol. 107: 185-192.
  • Tan, S.Y., B.F. Cayabyab, E.P. Alcantara, Y.B. Ibrahim, F. Huang, E.E. Blankenship and B.D. Siegfried. 2011.
    Comparative Susceptibility of Ostrinia furnacalis, Ostrinia nubilalis and Diatraea saccharalis (Lepidoptera:
    Crambidae) to Bacillus thuringiensis Cry1 Toxins. Crop Prot. 30: 1184-1189.
  • Coates, B.S., D.V. Sumerford, H. Wang, C.A. Abel, R.L. Hellmich, and B.D. Siegfried. A single major QTL
    controls expression of larval Cry1F resistance trait in Ostrinia nubilalis (Lepidoptera: Crambidae).
    Genetica 139: 961-972. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21822602
  • Valencia, J.W.A., A.V. Jimenez, G. de Siqueira, K.M. Dussan, F.G.M. Restrepo, E.X. Filho, B.D. Siegfried, and
    M.F. Grossi-de-Sa. 2011. Holocellulase activity from Schizophyllum commune grown on bamboo: a
    comparison with different substrates. Curr. Microbiol. 63:581-587.
  • Khajuria, C., L.L. Buschman, M. Chen, B.D. Siegfried, and K.Y. Zhu. Identification of a novel
    aminopeptidase P-like gene (OnAPP ) possibly involved in Bt toxicity and resistance in a major corn pest
    (Ostrinia nubilalis). PLoSONE 6(8):e23983.
  • B. E. Tabashnik, F. Huang, N. Mukti, B. Ghimire, B.R. Leonard, B.D. Siegfried, M. Rangasamy, Y. Yang, Y.
    Wu, L.J. Gahan, D.G. Heckel, A. Bravo and M. Soberón. Efficacy of genetically modified Bt Toxins against
    insects with different mechanisms of resistance. Nature Biotech. 29: 1128-1131.
  • Rangasamy, M. and B.D. Siegfried. 2011. Validation of RNA interference in western corn rootworm,
    Diabrotica virgifera virgifera (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) adults. Pest Manag. Sci. DOI 10.1002/ps.2301.


Notable Distinctions:
  • Awarded Charles Bessey Professorship for distinguished scholarship and creative activity, University of
    Nebraska-Lincoln, 2008
  • Research Award of Merit, University of Nebraska Chapter of Gamma Sigma Delta, 2006
  • Outstanding Scientist Award, Sigma Xi Nebraska Chapter, 2003
  • Recipient of British Biology and Biotechnology Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) Underwood Fund to
    support international collaboration with BBSRC funded scientists, 2003
  • American Distance Education Consortium, Education Program Award (Presented to the Entomology
    Department), 2002
  • USDA-ARS Team Award, National Areawide Integrated Pest Management Program for Corn Rootworm
    Across the U.S. Corn Belt, 2000
  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Food Quality Protection Act, Scientific Review Board. Bacillus
    thuringiensis (Bt) Plant - Pesticide; Resistance Management and Effects Non-target Organisms, 2000
  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. FIFRA Scientific Advisory panel, Subpanel on Bacillus thuringiensis
    (Bt) Plant -Pesticides and Resistance Management, 1998.
  • International Life Sciences (ILSI). Expert Panel Evaluation of Insect Resistance Management in Bt Field
    Corn: A Science-Based Framework for Risk Assessment and Risk Management, 1997 - 1998
  • Outstanding Young Scientist Award, University of Nebraska Chapter of Sigma Xi 1994
  • University of Nebraska Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Agricultural Research Division, Junior
    Faculty Recognition for Excellence in Research, 1993
  • Selected as foreign exchange student, Kelvin Grove College of Advanced Education, Brisbane, Australia
    and Lock Haven University, 1981
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