Journal of Chemical Ecology

, Volume 42, Issue 10, pp 1004–1015 | Cite as

Volatiles of Solena amplexicaulis (Lam.) Gandhi Leaves Influencing Attraction of Two Generalist Insect Herbivores

  • Nupur Sarkar
  • Amarnath Karmakar
  • Anandamay Barik


Epilachna vigintioctopunctata Fabr. (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) and Aulacophora foveicollis Lucas (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) are important pests of Solena amplexicaulis (Lam.) Gandhi (Cucurbitaceae), commonly known as creeping cucumber. The profiles of volatile organic compounds from undamaged plants, plants after 48 hr continuous feeding of adult females of either E. vigintioctopunctata or A. foveicollis, by adults of both species, and after mechanical damaging were identified and quantified by GC-MS and GC-FID analyses. Thirty two compounds were detected in volatiles of all treatments. In all plants, methyl jasmonate was the major compound. In Y-shaped glass tube olfactometer bioassays under laboratory conditions, both insect species showed a significant preference for complete volatile blends from insect damaged plants, compared to those of undamaged plants. Neither E. vigintioctopunctata nor A. foveicollis showed any preference for volatiles released by heterospecifically damaged plants vs. conspecifically damaged plants or plants attacked by both species. Epilachna vigintioctopunctata and A. foveicollis showed attraction to three different synthetic compounds, linalool oxide, nonanal, and E-2-nonenal in proportions present in volatiles of insect damaged plants. Both species were attracted by a synthetic blend of 1.64 μg linalool oxide + 3.86 μg nonanal + 2.23 μg E-2-nonenal, dissolved in 20 μl methylene chloride. This combination might be used as trapping tools in pest management strategies.


Solena amplexicaulis Volatiles Coleoptera Coccinellidae Epilachna vigintioctopunctata Chrysomelidae Aulacophora foveicollis olfactometer bioassay 



We thank Prof. Wittko Francke and two anonymous reviewers for helpful suggestions on an earlier version of the manuscript. We are thankful to Dr. Poorani Janakiraman, National Bureau of Agriculturally Important Insects (formerly PDBC), Karnataka, India for identifying the insects. Financial assistance from West Bengal Department of Science and Technology (WB-DST) [Sanction No. 889 (Sanc.)/ST/P/S&T/2G-6/2013], India is gratefully acknowledged.

Supplementary material

10886_2016_757_MOESM1_ESM.docx (239 kb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 239 kb)


  1. Bahlai CA, Welsman JA, Macleod EC, Schaafsma AW, Hallett RH, Sears MK (2008) Role of visual and olfactory cues from agricultural hedgerows in the orientation behavior of multicolored Asian lady beetle (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae). Environ Entomol 37:973–979CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Beyaert I, Wäschke N, Scholz A, Varama M, Reinecke A, Hilker M (2010) Relevance of resource-indicating key volatiles and habitat odour for insect orientation. Anim Behav 79:1077–1086CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Binder RG, Flath RA, Mon TR (1989) Volatile components of bitter melon. J Agric Food Chem 37:418–420CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bruce TJA, Pickett JA (2011) Perception of plant volatile blends by herbivorous insects − finding the right mix. Phytochemistry 72:1605–1611CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Bruce TJA, Wadhams LJ, Woodcock CM (2005) Insect host location: a volatile situation. Trends Plant Sci 10:269–274CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. Choudhuri DK, Mondal S, Ghosh B (1983) Insect pest and host plant interaction: the influence of host plant on the bionomics of Epilachna dodecastigma (Wied.) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae). Com Physiol Ecol 8:150–154Google Scholar
  7. Creelman RA, Mullet JE (1997) Biosynthesis and action of jasmonates in plants. Annu Rev Plant Physiol Plant Mol Biol 48:355–381CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. De Moraes CM, Lewis WJ, Paré PW, Alborn HT, Tumlinson JH (1998) Herbivore-infested plants selectively attract parasitiods. Nature 393:570–573CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Dicke M, Hilker M (2003) Induced plant defences: From molecular biology to evolutionary ecology. Basic Appl Ecol 4:3–14CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Farmer EE, Ryan CA (1990) Interplant communication: Airborne methyl jasmonate induces synthesis of proteinase inhibitors in plant leaves. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 87:7713–7716CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  11. Gouinguené SP, Alborn H, Turlings TCJ (2003) Induction of volatile emissions in maize by different larval instars of Spodoptera littoralis. J Chem Ecol 29:145–162CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Karmakar A, Barik A (2016) Solena amplexicaulis (Cucurbitaceae) flower surface wax influencing attraction of a generalist insect herbivore, Aulacophora foveicollis (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae). Int J Trop Insect Sci 36:70–81CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Karmakar A, Malik U, Barik A (2016) Effects of leaf epicuticular wax compounds from Solena amplexicaulis (Lam.) Gandhi on olfactory responses of a generalist insect herbivore. Allelopathy J 37:253–272Google Scholar
  14. Karthika K, Paulsamy S (2014) Phytochemical profiling of leaf, stem, and tuber parts of Solena amplexicaulis (Lam.) Gandhi Using GC-MS. Int Scholar Res Not. doi: 10.1155/2014/567409 Google Scholar
  15. Karthika K, Paulsamy S, Jamuna S (2012) Evaluation of in vitro antioxidant potential of methanolic leaf and stem extracts of Solena amplexicaulis (Lam.) Gandhi. J Chem Pharm Res 4:3254–3258Google Scholar
  16. Kegge W, Pierik R (2010) Biogenetic volatile organic compounds and plant competition. Trends Plant Sci 15:126–132CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. Khan MMH, Alam MZ, Rahman MM (2011) Host preference of red pumpkin beetle in a choice test under net case condition. Bangladesh J Zool 39:231–234Google Scholar
  18. Magalhães DM, Borges M, Laumann RA, Sujii ER, Mayon P, Caulfield JC, Midega CAO, Khan ZR, Pickett JA, Birkett MA, Blassioli-Moraes MC (2012) Semiochemicals from herbivory induced cotton plants enhance the foraging behaviour of the cotton boll weevil, Anthonomus grandis. J Chem Ecol 38:1528–1538CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. Malik U, Barik A (2015) Free fatty acids from the weed, Polygonum orientale leaves for attraction of the potential biocontrol agent, Galerucella placida (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae). Biocont Sci Tech 25:593–607CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Mukherjee A, Barik A (2014) Long-chain free fatty acids from Momordica cochinchinensis Spreng flowers as allelochemical influencing the attraction of Aulacophora foveicollis Lucas (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae). Allelopathy J 33:255–266Google Scholar
  21. Mukherjee A, Sarkar N, Barik A (2013) Alkanes in flower surface waxes of Momordica cochinchinensis influence attraction to Aulacophora foveicollis Lucas (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae). Neotrop Entomol 42:366–371CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  22. Mukherjee A, Sarkar N, Barik A (2015a) Momordica cochinchinensis (Cucurbitaceae) leaf volatiles: Semiochemicals for host location by the insect pest, Aulacophora foveicollis (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae). Chemoecology 25:93–104CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Mukherjee A, Sarkar N, Barik A (2015b) Leaf surface n-alkanes of Momordica cochinchinensis Spreng as short-range attractants for its insect pest, Aulacophora foveicollis Lucas (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae). Allelopathy J 36:109–122Google Scholar
  24. Nagarani G, Abirami A, Siddhuraju P (2014) Food prospects and nutraceutical attributes of Momordica species: a potential tropical bioresources—a review. Food Sci Human Wellness 3:117–126CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Nantachit K, Tuchinda P (2009) Antimicrobial activity of hexane and dichloromethane extracts from Momordica cochinchinensis (Lour.) Spreng leaves. Thai Pharm Health Sci J 4:15–20Google Scholar
  26. Ninkovic V (2003) Volatile communication between barley plants affects biomass allocation. J Exp Bot 54:1931–1939CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  27. Ninkovic V, Glinwood R, Dahlin I (2009) Weed-barley interactions affect plant acceptance by aphids in laboratory and field experiments. Entomol Exp Appl 133:38–45CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Paré PW, Tumlinson JH (1996) Plant volatile signals in response to herbivore feeding. Florida Entomol 79:93–103CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Paré PW, Tumlinson JH (1999) Plant volatiles as a defense against insect herbivores. Plant Physiol 121:325–331CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  30. Piesik D, Wenda-Piesik A, Lamparski R, Tabaka P, Ligor T, Buszewski B (2010) Effects of mechanical injury and insect feeding on volatiles emitted by wheat plants. Entomol Fennica 21:117–128Google Scholar
  31. Piesik D, Pańka D, Delaney KJ, Skoczek A, Lamparski R, Weaver DK (2011) Cereal crop volatile organic compound induction after mechanical injury, beetle herbivory (Oulema spp.), or fungal infection (Fusarium spp.). J Plant Physiol 168:878–886CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  32. Piesik D, Rochat D, Delaney KJ, Marion-Poll F (2013) Orientation of European corn borer first instar larvae to synthetic green leaf volatiles. J Appl Entomol 137:234–240CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Rahaman MA, Prodhan MDH (2007) Effects of net barrier and synthetic pesticides on Red pumpkin beetle and yield of cucumber. Int J Sustain Crop Prod 2:30–34Google Scholar
  34. Riffell JA, Lei H, Hildebrand JG (2009a) Neural correlates of behavior in the moth Manduca sexta in response to complex odors. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 106:19219–19226CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  35. Riffell JA, Lei H, Christensen TA, Hildebrand JG (2009b) Characterization and coding of behaviorally significant odor mixtures. Curr Biol 19:335–340CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  36. Röse USR, Tumlinson JH (2004) Volatiles released from cotton plants in response to Helicoverpa zea feeding damage on cotton flower buds. Planta 218:824–832CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  37. Röse USR, Tumlinson JH (2005) Systemic induction of volatile release in cotton: how specific is the signal to herbivory? Planta 222:327–335CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  38. Sarkar N, Barik A (2015) Free fatty acids from Momordica charantia L. flower surface waxes influencing attraction of Epilachna dodecastigma (Wied.) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae). Int J Pest Manag 61:47–53CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Sarkar N, Mukherjee A, Barik A (2015) Attraction of Epilachna dodecastigma (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) to Momordica charantia (Cucurbitaceae) leaf volatiles. Canad Entomol 147:169–180CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Schoonhoven LM, van Loon JJA, Dicke M (2005) Insect-plant biology. Oxford University Press, OxfordGoogle Scholar
  41. Singh D, Gill CK (1979) Estimation of losses in growth and yield of muskmelon due to Aulacophora foveicollis (Lucas). Ind J Entomol 44:294–295Google Scholar
  42. Sinha SN, Chakrabarti AK (1983) Effect of seed treatment with carbofuran on the incidence of red pumpkin beetle, Rhaphidopalpa foveicollis (Lucas) on cucurbits. Ind J Entomol 45:145–151Google Scholar
  43. Tabata J, De Moraes CM, Mescher MC (2011) Olfactory cues from plants infected by powdery mildew guide foraging by a mycophagous ladybird beetle. PLoS One 6:e23799CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  44. Tasin M, Anfora G, Ioriatti C, Carlin S, De Cristofaro A, Schmidt S, Bengtsson M, Versini G, Witzgall P (2005) Antennal and behavioural responses of grapevine moth Lobesia botrana females to volatiles from grapevine. J Chem Ecol 31:77–87CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  45. Tasin M, Bäckman A-C, Bengtsson M, Ioriatti C, Witzgall P (2006) Essential host plant cues in the grapevine moth. Naturwissenschaften 93:141–144CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  46. Turlings TCJ, Bernasconi M, Bertossa R, Bigler F, Caloz G, Dorn S (1998) The induction of volatile emissions in maize by three herbivore species with different feeding habits: possible consequences for their natural enemies. Biol Control 11:122–129CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Venkateshwarlu E, Raghuram Reddy A, Goverdhan P, Swapna Rani K, Jayapal Reddy G (2011) In vitro and in vivo antioxidant activity of methanolic extract of Solena amplexicaulis (whole plant). Int J Pharm Bio Sci 1:522–533Google Scholar
  48. Visser JH (1986) Host odor perception in phytophagous insects. Annu Rev Entomol 31:121–144CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Wang P, Zhang N, Zhou LL, Si SY, Lei CL, Ai H, Wang XP (2014) Antennal and behavioral responses of female Maruca vitrata to the floral volatiles of Vigna unguiculata and Lablab purpureus. Entomol Exp Appl 152:248–257CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Webster B, Bruce T, Pickett J, Hardie J (2010) Volatiles functioning as host cues in a blend become nonhost cues when presented alone to the black bean aphid. Animal Behav 79:451–457CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Wei J-N, Zhu J, Kang L (2006) Volatiles released from bean plants in response to agromyzid flies. Planta 224:279–287CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  52. Wenda-Piesik A, Piesik D, Ligor T, Buszewski B (2010) Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from cereal plants infested with crown rot: their identity and their capacity for inducing production of VOCs in uninfested plants. Int J Pest Manag 56:377–383CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Zhang YT, Zhang YL, Chen SX, Yin GH, Yang ZZ, Lee S, Liu CG, Zhao DD, Ma YK, Song FQ, Bennett JW, Yang FS (2015) Proteomics of methyl jasmonate induced defense response in maize leaves against Asian corn borer. BMC Genomics 16:224CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nupur Sarkar
    • 1
  • Amarnath Karmakar
    • 1
  • Anandamay Barik
    • 1
  1. 1.Ecology Research Laboratory, Department of ZoologyThe University of BurdwanBurdwanIndia

Personalised recommendations