Submitted to: Journal of Chemical Ecology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: June 18, 2001
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: The Asian Longhorned Beetle (ALB) is an invasive species that attacks, damages, and eventually kills a wide variety of healthy hardwood trees. It was first discovered in New York City in 1996 and then in Chicago in 1998. This insect threatens to cause billions of dollars in losses to forestry and the nursery industry. To date, detection of ALB infestation relies on visual inspection which is believed to detect at best only ~30% of the infested trees. An attractant to lure ALB's into traps is needed to detect and monitor this insect more efficiently. In a collaborative effort with APHIS scientists, we isolated, identified, and synthesized two male-specific compounds which are attractive to walking ALB females and males in a laboratory bioassay. A patent has been granted (U.S. Patent No. 6,177,073 B1; http://ott.ars.usda.gov/inv/A347907.htm) for the use of these compounds to detect and manage this invasive species.
Two male-specific beetle volatiles were found that elicited strong gas chromatographic-electroantennographic detection (GC-EAD) responses from both sexes of adult Asian longhorned beetle (ALB), Anoplophora glabripennis. The secretion consisted of a ~1:1 blend of functionalized dialkyl ethers, 4-(n-heptyloxy)butanal 1 and 4- (n-heptyloxy)butan-1-ol 2. In preliminary behavioral tests this blend appeared to stimulate flight and walking in both sexes, and beetles were attracted to the synthetic beetle volatiles in an olfactometer. In contrast, in field tests conducted in China in July 1999 and July-August 2000, traps designed for flying insects and baited with 1 and/or 2 failed to catch ALB of either sex.