Submitted to: Journal of Chemical Ecology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/16/1997
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: Surface wax chemicals were analyzed from males and females of the eight species of tsetse flies not previously reported. The methyl, dimethyl and trimethyl-branched alkanes were similar in quality and quantity to those already discovered in closely-related species. The multiply-branched compounds give clues to sex pheromones in female flies, and strengthen relationships defined by physical mophology.
Technical Abstract: The cuticular n-alkanes and methyl-branched alkanes of tsetse flies of the subgenera Glossina (sensu stricto) and Nemorhina were identified and quantified by capillary gas-liquid chromatography (GLC) and GLC-mass spectrometry (GLC-MS). Glossina (Nemorhina) is differentiated from G. (Glossina) by predominant 27, 28 and/or 29 carbon backbone 3,7,11-and 4,8,12-trimethylalkanes in the males. Cuticular methylalkanes in the females are characterized by long-chain internally-branched di- and/or trimethylalkanes as majority components that have been implicated as mediating sexual behavior in males. Within G. (Glossina) and G. (Nemorhina), taxa considered to be closely related and/or conspecific based upon morphological and ecological criteria exhibit similar cuticular methylalkane patterns and internally-branched di- and trimethylalkanes in the females.