Chemical Biology of Insect and Plant Signaling Systems
Chemistry Research Unit
Project Number: 6615-22000-027-00
Start Date: Dec 08, 2010
End Date: Dec 07, 2015
1. Determination of physiological and biochemical mechanisms, elicitors, and regulators involved in the interactions of plants with insects and their natural enemies.
1a. Isolation and identification of elicitors or biotic agents of induced plant volatile emission and other inducible plant defenses.
1b. Elucidation of the signaling interactions that mediate insect and insect elicitor induced plant defenses and volatile emission.
2. Identification and evaluation of chemicals that regulate or influence behaviors, including foraging, mating and oviposition, of important pest insects.
2a. Isolate and identify plant volatiles and insect produced pheromones that in combination attract male and female pepper and cranberry weevils.
2b. Identification of oviposition deterring pheromone from pepper weevil.
2c. Interaction between Insect and Host Volatiles on Reproductive Development of Anastrepha spp. (Dipera:Tephrididae).
2d. Identification of oviposition deterring pheromones for Tephritid Fruit Flies.
2e. Influence of Fruit Volatiles on attraction of Small Hive Beetle.
3. Improve the efficacy of alternatives to methyl bromide fumigation for management of stored-product insects by developing new attractants and behavior-altering chemicals that affect Sitophilous spp. (rice and maize weevils) and Tribolim castaneum (red flour beetle) for the purpose of understanding the chemical ecology of these insects and developing practical methods for detection and control.
Identify and evaluate chemicals that regulate or influence behaviors, including foraging, mating and oviposition, of important pest insects. Determine the physiological and biochemical mechanisms, elicitors, and regulators involved in the interactions of plants with insects, insect natural enemies and other organisms. This research will utilize numerous interactive bioassays with insects, plants, purified biochemicals and other organisms. Isolation and identification of new bioactive chemicals that mediate insect behaviors and plant-insect interactions will be achieved using a combination of approaches including preparative GC, HPLC, preparative flash chromatography, GC/MS, FT-IR, NMR, micro-degradation and synthesis where applicable. Major target insects for this research will include pest Lepidoptera, Coleoptera and Diptera that attack fruit and vegetables and coleopteran pests of Honey Bees. Other target insects may be selected as needed during progression of the project.