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Journal of Chemical Ecology

Stephen J Martin, Sue Shemilt, Cândida B da S Lima, Carlos A L de Carvalho
Our understanding of the role of cuticular hydrocarbons (CHC) in recognition is based largely on temperate ant species and honey bees. The stingless bees remain relatively poorly studied, despite being the largest group of eusocial bees, comprising more than 400 species in some 60 genera. The Meliponini and Apini diverged between 80-130 Myr B.P. so the evolutionary trajectories that shaped the chemical communication systems in ants, honeybees and stingless bees may be very different. The aim of this study was to study if a unique species CHC signal existed in Neotropical stingless bees, as has been shown for many temperate species, and what compounds are involved...
November 17, 2017: Journal of Chemical Ecology
Carola Helletsgruber, Stefan Dötterl, Ulrike Ruprecht, Robert R Junker
Floral scents are key mediators of biotic interactions between flowers and various organisms such as pollinators, antagonistic animals and bacteria. It has been shown that emissions of floral volatiles are influenced by interactions with other organisms at the levels of roots, leaves and flowers. However, it is largely unknown whether and how epiphytic bacteria associated with flowers affect the composition of floral scent. By comparing volatiles of sterile and inoculated plants we found that bacteria may add components, induce or reduce the emission of compounds, and potentially catabolize others...
November 14, 2017: Journal of Chemical Ecology
Emily Mevers, Thomas Chouvenc, Nan-Yao Su, Jon Clardy
Bacteria and fungi in shared environments compete with one another for common substrates, and this competition typically involves microbially-produced small molecules. An investigation of one shared environmental niche, the carton material of the Formosan subterranean termite Coptotermes formosanus, identified the participants on one of these molecular exchanges. Molecular characterization of several termite-associated actinobacteria strains identified eleven known antimicrobial metabolites that may aid in protecting the C...
November 13, 2017: Journal of Chemical Ecology
Seong-Bum Park, Jong Youn Kim, Jung Yeon Han, Chang-Ho Ahn, Eung-Jun Park, Yong Eui Choi
Benzoic acids (BAs) are important structural elements in a wide variety of essential compounds and natural products, and play crucial roles in plant fitness. BA is a precursor of diverse benzenoid compounds, including the hormone salicylic acid (SA) and the aglycone moiety of salicin, which is particularly important in the Salicaceae family. The biosynthetic pathways leading to BA formation in plants are largely unknown. Recently, the CoA-dependent β-oxidative BA biosynthesis pathway, which occurs in peroxisomes, has been characterized in petunia...
November 11, 2017: Journal of Chemical Ecology
Lakshya Katariya, Priya B Ramesh, Thejashwini Gopalappa, Sathish Desireddy, Jean-Marie Bessière, Renee M Borges
Mutualistic associations such as the fungal farms of insects are prone to parasitism and are consequently vulnerable to attack by weeds and pests. Therefore, efficient farm management requires quick detection of weeds for their elimination. Furthermore, if the available weedicides are non-specific, then the ability of insects to discriminate between crop and weeds becomes essential for targeted application of such compounds. Here, we demonstrate for the first time in fungus-farming insects, that worker castes of the fungus-growing termite Odontotermes obesus discriminate between their crop (Termitomyces) and the weedy (Pseudoxylaria) fungi, even if exposed to only fungal scents...
November 9, 2017: Journal of Chemical Ecology
Lorenzo Fortuna, Elena Baracchini, Gianpiero Adami, Mauro Tretiach
Lichens belonging to Parmeliaceae are highly diversified, but most of them share an extremely conserved morpho-chemical trait: the lower cortex is heavily melanized. The adaptive value of this character is still uncertain. Melanins are ubiquitous compounds found in most organisms since they fulfil several biological functions including defense against UV radiation, oxidizing agents, microbial stress, and metal complexation. This work aims to establish whether melanization can affect the elemental content of lichen thalli...
November 3, 2017: Journal of Chemical Ecology
R A Lastra, N C Kenkel, F Daayf
In the aspen-grassland ecotone of Riding Mountain, Manitoba, lightly browsed vigorous clones of trembling aspen (Populus tremuloides Michx.) occur in close proximity to heavily browsed dieback clones. This study examines whether intraspecific variation in the production of phenolic glycosides is correlated with this strong dichotomy in clonal vigor. Individual clones were sampled over four years at three sites located along a gradient of increasing soil moisture stress. At each site, eight aspen clones of similar size and age were sampled: four vigorous and four dieback clones (total of 24 individual clones)...
October 24, 2017: Journal of Chemical Ecology
Rui-Nan Yang, Dong-Zhen Li, Guangqiang Yu, Shan-Cheng Yi, Yinan Zhang, De-Xin Kong, Man-Qun Wang
In light of reverse chemical ecology, the fluorescence competitive binding assays of functional odorant binding proteins (OBPs) is a recent advanced approach for screening behaviorally active compounds of insects. Previous research on Dastareus helophoroides identified a minus-C OBP, DhelOBP21, which preferably binds to several ligands. In this study, only (+)-β-pinene proved attractive to unmated adult beetles. To obtain a more in-depth explanation of the lack of behavioral activity of other ligands we selected compounds with high (camphor) and low (β-caryophyllene) binding affinities...
October 23, 2017: Journal of Chemical Ecology
Shuai Yang, Xiao-Fang Zhang, Yu-Lin Gao, Dan Chen, Dong-Mei She, Tao Zhang, Jun Ning
The coffee bean weevil (CBW), Araecerus fasciculatus (De Geer, 1775), is a cosmopolitan stored-product pest, especially in tropical and subtropical areas. Previous reports showed evidence for aggregation behavior of CBW and this study aimed to identify and evaluate the aggregation pheromone of this pest. Whole-body solvent extractions were analyzed by coupled gas chromatography-mass spectrometry and comparison of male and female extracts showed a male-specific compound which was identified as squalene, 2,6,10,15,19,23-hexamethyl-2,6,10,14,18,22-tetracosahexaene...
October 17, 2017: Journal of Chemical Ecology
Wolf Haberer, Thomas Schmitt, Peter Schreier, Anne-Katrin Eggert, Josef K Müller
In burying beetles, Nicrophorus spp. (Coleoptera: Silphidae: Nicrophorinae) mate finding is mediated by male produced volatile compounds. To date, pheromone components of only two species have been identified. In an attempt to better understand the evolution of male pheromone signaling in burying beetles, we investigated the male released volatiles of ten Nicrophorus species and one closely related nicrophorine species, Ptomascopus mori. Volatiles emitted by calling males were collected in the laboratory by means of solid phase micro extraction and analyzed using gas chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry...
October 14, 2017: Journal of Chemical Ecology
Hilde Karine Wam, Caroline Stolter, Line Nybakken
The article Compositional Changes in Foliage Phenolics with Plant Age, a Natural Experiment in Boreal Forests, written by Hilde Karine Wam, Caroline Stolter and Line Nybakken, was originally published electronically on the publisher's internet portal (currently SpringerLink) on August 29, 2017 without open access.
October 13, 2017: Journal of Chemical Ecology
Frankie K Crutcher, Lorraine S Puckhaber, Robert D Stipanovic, Alois A Bell, Robert L Nichols, Katheryn S Lawrence, Jinggao Liu
Fusaric acid (FA) produced by Fusarium oxysporum plays an important role in disease development in plants, including cotton. This non-specific toxin also has antibiotic effects on microorganisms. Thus, one expects a potential pool of diverse detoxification mechanisms of FA in nature. Bacteria and fungi from soils infested with Fusarium and from laboratory sources were evaluated for their ability to grow in the presence of FA and to alter the structure of FA into less toxic compounds. None of the bacterial strains were able to chemically modify FA...
October 6, 2017: Journal of Chemical Ecology
Karen J Marsh, Wufeng Zhou, Hannah J Wigley, Ian Wallis, William J Foley
Ian Wallis was inadvertently omitted as an author in this study. Ian Wallis assisted with the collection of the leaf samples that were used in this study, and built the chambers that the insects were housed in.
October 5, 2017: Journal of Chemical Ecology
Courtney Marneweck, Andreas Jürgens, Adrian M Shrader
In order for an olfactory signal to be effective, it must persist in the environment for an extended period. White rhino dung odours transmit information about sex, age, territorial and oestrous states. As these odours relay important information, temporal changes in the odour emission rate and/or composition may be critical in order for other individuals to obtain this information. Here, we examine how the dung odours of adult white rhinos (male: territorial and non-territorial; female: oestrous and non-oestrous) change over the short (hours) and long (seasons) term using headspace extraction...
October 5, 2017: Journal of Chemical Ecology
Itaru Sakata, Masayuki Hayashi, Kiyoshi Nakamuta
In mutualisms, partner discrimination is often the most important challenge for interacting organisms. The interaction between ants and aphids is a model system for studying mutualisms; ants are provided with honeydew by aphids and, in turn, the ants offer beneficial services to the aphids. To establish and maintain this system, ants must discriminate mutualistic aphid species correctly. Although recent studies have shown that ants recognize aphids as mutualistic partners based on their cuticular hydrocarbons (CHCs), it was unclear which CHCs are involved in recognition...
October 4, 2017: Journal of Chemical Ecology
Mauro Schettino, Donato A Grasso, Berhane T Weldegergis, Cristina Castracani, Alessandra Mori, Marcel Dicke, Joop C Van Lenteren, Joop J A Van Loon
In response to herbivory by insects, various plants produce volatiles that attract enemies of the herbivores. Although ants are important components of natural and agro-ecosystems, the importance of herbivore-induced plant volatiles (HIPVs) as cues for ants for finding food sources have received little attention. We investigated responses of the ant Formica pratensis to volatiles emitted by uninfested and insect-infested cucumber (Cucumis sativus) and potato (Solanum tuberosum) plants. Cucumber plants were infested by the phloem-feeding aphid Aphis gossypii, the leaf chewer Mamestra brassicae or simultaneously by both insects...
September 26, 2017: Journal of Chemical Ecology
David Alavez-Rosas, Edi A Malo, Miguel A Guzmán, Daniel Sánchez-Guillén, Rogel Villanueva-Gutiérrez, Leopoldo Cruz-López
Stingless bees foraging for food improve recruitment by depositing chemical cues on valuable food sites or pheromone marks on vegetation. Using gas chromatography/mass spectrometry and bioassays, we showed that Melipona solani foragers leave a mixture composed mostly of long chain hydrocarbons from their abdominal cuticle plus methyl oleate from the labial gland as a scent mark on rich food sites. The composition of hydrocarbons was highly variable among individuals and varied in proportions, depending on the body part...
September 16, 2017: Journal of Chemical Ecology
Simon Baeckens, Roberto García-Roa, José Martín, Raoul Van Damme
Lizards communicate with others via chemical signals, the composition of which may vary among species. Although the selective pressures and constraints affecting chemical signal diversity at the species level remain poorly understood, the possible role of diet has been largely neglected. The chemical signals of many lizards originate from the femoral glands that exude a mixture of semiochemicals, and may be used in a variety of contexts. We analyzed the lipophilic fraction of the glandular secretions of 45 species of lacertid lizard species by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry...
September 2017: Journal of Chemical Ecology
Benjamin Fürstenau, Monika Hilker
Parasitic wasps which attack insects infesting processed stored food need to locate their hosts hidden inside these products. Their host search is well-known to be guided by host kairomones, perceived via olfaction or contact. Among contact kairomones, host cuticular hydrocarbons (CHCs) may provide reliable information for a parasitoid. However, the chemistry of CHC profiles of hosts living in processed stored food products is largely unknown. Here we showed that the ectoparasitoid Holepyris sylvanidis uses CHCs of its host Tribolium confusum, a worldwide stored product pest, as kairomones for host location and recognition at short range...
September 2017: Journal of Chemical Ecology
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