Submitted to: American Chemical Society Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/31/2000
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Plants produce many compounds that have been shown to deter insect feeding, acting either as metabolic poisons or as feeding deterrents. Several insect species have been shown to be sensitive to specific flavonoids in feeding tests. For example, high levels of the luteolin C-glycoside maysin, found in the silks of certain cultivars of corn (Zea mays L.), have been shown to be one of the key factors conferring resistance to attack by the corn earworm [Helicoveria zea (Boddie)]. The elucidation of the genetic and enzymatic mechanisms is a key part of a breeding program designed to transfer the genes involved to economically important corn cultivars as a method of earworm control. The analytical methodology for evaluating flavonoid composition in these hybrids and its use in elucidating the enzymatic steps involved in the biosynthesis of these compounds will be discussed. An overview of plant-insect interactions involving flavonoids will also be presented.