Journal of Chemical Ecology

, Volume 6, Issue 1, pp 57–70

Alarm pheromones from the marine opisthobranchNavanax inermis

Authors

  • Howard L. Sleeper
    • Institute of Marine ResourcesScripps Institution of Oceanography
  • Valerie J. Paul
    • Institute of Marine ResourcesScripps Institution of Oceanography
  • William Fenical
    • Institute of Marine ResourcesScripps Institution of Oceanography
Article

DOI: 10.1007/BF00987527

Cite this article as:
Sleeper, H.L., Paul, V.J. & Fenical, W. J Chem Ecol (1980) 6: 57. doi:10.1007/BF00987527

Abstract

When molested, the marine opisthobranchNavanax inermis secretes into its slime trail, a bright yellow mixture of three major compounds and several closely related minor substances. Collectively, these compounds induce an avoidance-alarm response in a trail-followingNavanax at the concentration limits of 1 × 10−5 M. The three major compounds have been isolated and identified as 10-(3′-pyridyl)-3E,5E,7E,9E-decatetraen-2-one (navenone A), 10-phenyl-3E,5E,7E,9E-decatetraen-2-one (navenone B) and 10-(4′-hydroxyphenyl)-3E,5E,7E,9E-decatetraen-2-one (navenone C). The minor constituents of the mixture are proposed as the 3Z,5Z,7E,9E-isomers and the 3-methyl homologs of navenones A and B. The navenones appear to be produced in a specialized gland referred to in earlier studies as the “yellow gland” and to communicate the presence of predators within the species.

Key words

Navanax inermis (syn.Chelidonura inermis)marine-alarm pheromonesnavenones A-Cchemical defense

Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1980