Olfactory recognition of host plants in the absence of host-specific volatile compounds

Webster, Ben and Bruce, Toby and Pickett, John and Hardie, Jim (2008) Olfactory recognition of host plants in the absence of host-specific volatile compounds. Communicative and Integrative Biology, 1 (2). pp. 167-169. ISSN 1942-0889

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Abstract

The black bean aphid, Aphis fabae, responds behaviorally to the odor of its host plant faba bean (Vicia faba) in olfactometer bioassays by spending more time in the treated than control regions. We have shown previously that a blend of fifteen volatile compounds emitted by V. faba elicits the same response as a headspace sample of an intact V. faba plant. Here we report that no single compound within this blend fully accounts for the behavioral response and that the responses to individual compounds are different when in the context of the blend. As none of the compounds are specific to the host, we have hypothesized that A. fabae responds preferentially to the blend of compounds when presented in a species-specific combination of volatiles or in ratios specific to V. faba. Future plans to test which of these two hypotheses pertains to host-seeking Aphis fabae are discussed.

Additional Information:The black bean aphid, Aphis fabae, responds behaviorally to the odor of its host plant faba bean (Vicia faba) in olfactometer bioassays by spending more time in the treated than control regions. We have shown previously that a blend of fifteen volatile compounds emitted by V. faba elicits the same response as a headspace sample of an intact V. faba plant. Here we report that no single compound within this blend fully accounts for the behavioral response and that the responses to individual compounds are different when in the context of the blend. As none of the compounds are specific to the host, we have hypothesized that A. fabae responds preferentially to the blend of compounds when presented in a species-specific combination of volatiles or in ratios specific to V. faba. Future plans to test which of these two hypotheses pertains to host-seeking Aphis fabae are discussed.
Keywords:aphis fabae, electroantennogram, host plant, insect-plant interaction, kairomone, olfactometer, semiochemical, vicia faba, volatiles
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C100 Biology
Divisions:College of Science > School of Life Sciences
ID Code:7437
Deposited On:06 Feb 2013 17:15

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