Université de Neuchâtel

Restoring a maize root signal that attracts insect-killing nematodes to control a major pest

Degenhardt, Jörg ; Hiltpold, Ivan ; Köllner, Tobias G. ; Frey, Monika ; Gierl, Alfons ; Gershenzon, Jonathan ; Hibbard, Bruce E. ; Ellersieck, Mark R. ; Turlings, Ted C. J.

In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 2009, vol. 106, no. 32, p. 13213-13218

When attacked by herbivorous insects, plants emit volatile compounds that attract natural enemies of the insects. It has been proposed that these volatile signals can be manipulated to improve crop protection. Here, we demonstrate the full potential of this strategy by restoring the emission of a specific belowground signal emitted by insect-damaged maize roots. The western corn rootworm induces...