Non-Phytotoxic Adjuvant Improves Rainfastness and Sustained Release of Streptomycin

Technology #11592

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Results of an example application of the invention on tomato leaves 72 hours after treatment, illuminated with a handheld UV light at 254 nm. The bright yellow emitting fluorescence signal can be used as an indicator for tracing the presence of the treatment on the plant.
Tyler Maxwell
Swadeshmukul Santra, Ph.D.
Parthiban Rajasekaran, Ph.D.
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US Patent Pending

Key Points

  • Improves rainfastness, UV-stability and vascular mobility of streptomycin in protecting pome fruits from fire blight and suppressing huanglongbing (citrus greening disease)
  • Particulate is small enough to mobilize to areas (such as stomata, hydathodes and vascular tissues (such as xylem and phloem) where traditional agrochemicals may not penetrate
  • Nanoparticle is non-toxic and free of heavy metals due to its micronutrient-based composition


The University of Central Florida invention is a novel non‐phytotoxic zinc sulfide (ZnS) nanoparticle-based adjuvant that demonstrates improved rainfastness and sustained release of streptomycin. Recently, streptomycin sulfate (65.8 percent active ingredient) has been labeled for suppression of Huanglongbing in Florida. The active ingredient is water-soluble and therefore suffers from poor rainfastness after foliar application. Due to high polarity, the uptake and mobility of streptomycin sulfate through the phloem vascular system is limited. Furthermore, streptomycin is prone to UV degradation when exposed to direct sunlight. The UCF adjuvant offers a solution to improve rainfastness, UV stability and vascular mobility.