PloS one

Electrophysiological and behavioral responses of male fall webworm moths (Hyphantria cunea) to Herbivory-induced mulberry (Morus alba) leaf volatiles.

PMID 23166622


Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) were collected from damaged and intact mulberry leaves (Morus alba L., Moraceae) and from Hyphantria cunea larvae by headspace absorption with Super Q columns. We identified their constituents using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, and evaluated the responses of male H. cunea antennae to the compounds using gas chromatography-flame ionization detection coupled with electroantennographic detection. Eleven VOC constituents were found to stimulate antennae of male H. cunea moths: β-ocimene, hexanal, cis-3-hexenal, limonene, trans-2-hexenal, cyclohexanone, cis-2-penten-1-ol, 6-methyl-5-hepten-2-one, 4-hydroxy-4-methyl-2-pentanone, trans-3-hexen-1-ol, and 2,4-dimethyl-3-pentanol. Nine of these chemicals were released by intact, mechanically-damaged, and herbivore-damaged leaves, while cis-2-penten-1-ol was released only by intact and mechanically-damaged leaves and β-ocimene was released only by herbivore-damaged leaves. Results from wind tunnel experiments conducted with volatile components indicated that male moths were significantly more attracted to herbivory-induced volatiles than the solvent control. Furthermore, male moths' attraction to a sex pheromone lure was increased by herbivory-induced compounds and β-ocimene, but reduced by cis-2-penten-1-ol. A proof long-range field trapping experiment showed that the efficiency of sex pheromone lures in trapping male moths was increased by β-ocimene and reduced by cis-2-penten-1-ol.