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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Related Topics


Location: Chemistry Research

2009 Annual Report

1a. Objectives (from AD-416)
Develop improved methods for monitoring efficacy of control of stored product insect pests resulting from use of alternatives to the use of methyl bromide as structural fumigants in stored product facilities and provide improved methods population monitoring and for integrated pest management in food facilities such as wheat flour mills, rice mills, pet food facilities, and associated warehouses with the goal of eliminating the need for use of methyl bromide as a fumigant in these facilities.

1b. Approach (from AD-416)
Biological assay guided fractionation of naturally produced chemicals collected using various techniques will be used. Chemicals will be identified by chromatographic, spectroscopic and microdegradative methods and synthesized using organic synthesis procedures. Synthetic samples will be formulated using physicochemical principals so as to release ratios and amounts of chemicals identical to those released by natural sources and tested in biological assays.

3. Progress Report
Attractants for adult and larval Indianmeal moths were identified, tested, and patented. These patents were joint between this project and project #6615-22430-002-00D (referenced under Technology Transfer section). 1. Serial No: 12/365,345; Title: Indian meal moth attractant; Description: Identified 2-pentylfuran as a chemical attractant that originates from wheat germ for adult females of the Indian Meal Moth. The composition of the attractant was undecane, hexanal, 1-pentanol, decane, and 2-pentylfuran and mixtures thereof, and a carrier or carrier material serving as a slow release system. The composition is primarily used as an attractant for adult female Indian meal moths. The method includes treating an area or object with an effective amount of Indian meal moth attractant so that the Indian meal moths are drawn to the area or object. 2. Serial No: 12/362,236; Title: Attractant for Indian meal moth larvae Description: Identified 2-pentylfuran as a chemical attractant that originates from wheat germ for larvae of the Indian Meal Moth. The inventors used mass spectroscopic analysis (among other things) to identify 2-pentylfuran as the key attractant component in the volatiles emanating from whole wheat, from wheat germ and from wheat germ oil. All larval stages of Plodia are attracted to picogram quantities of 2-pentyl furan when bioassayed. The chemical has significant potential as a monitoring and control tool for the Indian meal moth.

4. Accomplishments
1. New Attractant for the Indianmeal Moth. The Indianmeal moth is a major, worldwide pest of grain and grain products that is typically controlled in food processing plants by methyl bromide fumigation. Use of methyl bromide is being phased out, and new attractants are needed for detecting and locating Indianmeal moth infestations. The new attractant will support alternative control measures that depend upon locating infestations within processing plants.

Review Publications
Silhacek, D.L., Murphy, C.L. 2008. Moisture Content in a wheat germ diet and its effect on the growth of Plodia interpunctella (Hubner). Journal of Stored Products Research. 44:36-40.

Last Modified: 08/19/2017
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