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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Peoria, Illinois » National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research » Crop Bioprotection Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #203360

Title: Activity of plant phenolics functioning as sources of insect resistance in plants

item Dowd, Patrick
item Johnson, Eric

Submitted to: American Chemical Society Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/29/2006
Publication Date: 3/29/2007
Citation: Dowd, P.F., Musser, R.O., Johnson, E.T. 2007. Activity of plant phenolics functioning as sources of insect resistance in plants [abstract]. American Chemical Society Abstracts. Abstract No. AGFD152.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: A variety of plant phenolic compounds are important in protecting plants from insects (as well as plant pathogens). Plants employing these molecules as resistance sources range from the tropical to the boreal and from the highly poisonous to the culinary delectable. Major classes of phenolic compounds involved in insect resistance include phenolic acids, flavonoids, and hydroxamic acids. Many are thought to exert "oxidative stress" on insects. They may occur at levels sufficient to promote resistance (constitutive) or may be synthesized de novo or at higher levels after induction of biosynthetic enzymes by insect feeding. Volatile aromatic compounds can act as attractants for parasites or predators of pest insects. Phenolic compounds can act as substrates of enzymes such as peroxidases that convert them to the actual resistance molecules. Molecular biology tools can be utilized to further understand how these compounds can be formed and function, such as through gene introductions and by the study of enzymes involved in biosynthesis through array analysis.