An Oviposition Stimulant for a Magnoliaceae-Feeding Swallowtail Butterfly, Graphium doson, from its Primary Host Plant, Michelia compressa
Chemical examination of plant constituents responsible for oviposition by a Magnoliaceae-feeding butterfly, Graphium doson, was conducted using its major host plant, Michelia compressa. A methanol extract prepared from young leaves of the plant elicited a strong oviposition response from females. The methanolic extract was then separated by solvent partition into three fractions: CHCl3, i-BuOH, and aqueous fractions. Active substance(s) resided in both i-BuOH- and water-soluble fractions. Bioassay-guided further fractionation of the water-soluble substances by means of various chromatographic techniques led to the isolation of an oviposition stimulant. The stimulant was identified as d-(+)-pinitol on the basis of 13C NMR spectra and physicochemical properties. d-(+)-Pinitol singly exhibited a moderate oviposition-stimulatory activity at a dose of 150 μg/cm2. This compound was present also in another host plant, Magnolia grandiflora, in a sufficient amount to induce oviposition behavior of G. doson females. Certain cyclitols including d-(+)-pinitol have been reported to be involved in stimulation of oviposition by some Aristolochiaceae- and Rutaceae-feeding papilionid butterflies. A possible pathway of phytochemical-mediated host shifts in the Papilionidae, in which certain cyclitols could enact important mediators, is discussed in relation to the evolution of cyclitol biosynthesis in plants.
Keywordsd-(+)-Pinitol Host shift Papilionidae Aristolochiaceae Magnoliaceae Rutaceae
We thank late Dr. M. Nakai and K. Gotoh for help with collecting G. doson females and kind supply of larval food plant.
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