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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Miami, Florida » Subtropical Horticulture Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #371797

Research Project: Methyl Bromide Replacement: Mitigation of the Invasive Pest Threat from the American Tropics and Subtropics

Location: Subtropical Horticulture Research

Title: TLC method for determination of kairomones for male Mediterranean fruit fly, Ceratitis capitata (Wiedemann), from tea tree oil

item Tabanca, Nurhayat
item NIOGRET, JEROME - Niogret Ecology Consulting
item Kendra, Paul
item Gill, Micah
item Schnell, Elena
item Montgomery, Wayne
item Epsky, Nancy

Submitted to: American Chemical Society National Meeting
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/15/2020
Publication Date: 8/17/2020
Citation: Tabanca, N., Niogret, J., Kendra, P.E., Gill, M.A., Schnell, E.Q., Montgomery, W.S., Epsky, N.D. 2020. TLC method for determination of kairomones for male Mediterranean fruit fly, Ceratitis capitata (Wiedemann), from tea tree oil. 260th National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society (Virtual). 17-20 Aug 2020.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: The Mediterranean fruit fly or medfly, Ceratitis capitata (Wiedemann) (Diptera: Tephritidae), is an economically important invasive pest globally, attacking a wide variety of fruits and vegetables. In response to this threat, researchers are developing kairomone-based trapping systems to enhance medfly detection and control. In this study, we focused on the separation and determination of attractive kairomones from tea tree [Melaleuca alternifolia (Maiden & Betche) Cheel] essential oil using a combination of thin-layer chromatography (TLC) and laboratory bioassays with sterile male C. capitata. After TLC separation, the plate was exposed to the flies where they aggregated around kairomones directly on the TLC surface. To confirm the activity, the developed plate was cut into five zones which were then subjected to short-range two-choice bioassays. In addition, zones were separated using preparative-TLC and fractions were evaluated using electroantennography (EAG) to quantify medfly olfactory responses. EAG analyses and short-range bioassays provided similar results, indicating that the TLC-based bioassay system can be an effective, rapid screening method for identification of insect kairomones from plant extracts or essential oils.