Acute Toxicity and Sub-lethal Effects of the Essential Oil of Aristolochia trilobata and Its Major Constituents on Nasutitermes corniger (Termitidae: Nasutitermitinae)

  • A A Santos
  • C R Melo
  • B M S Oliveira
  • A S Santana
  • A C C Santos
  • T S Sampaio
  • A F Blank
  • P F Cristaldo
  • A P A Araújo
  • L BacciEmail author
Pest Management


Nasutitermes corniger (Motschulsky, 1855) (Termitidae: Nasutitermitinae) is an important pest in urban environments and bioinsecticides can be an alternative to its control. Here, we determined the toxicity and repellence of the essential oil (EO) prepared from stems of Aristolochia trilobata L. (Aristolochiaceae) and its major constituents on N. corniger. We also investigated behavioral changes of individuals exposed to limonene. The lethal dose required to kill 50% of N. corniger population (LD50) of EO of A. trilobata was 2.44 μg mg−1. Limonene was the most toxic compound to N. corniger followed by linalool (LD50 = 1.02 and 1.29 μg mg−1, respectively). In addition, all treatments presented median lethal time (LT50) less than 11 h. A. trilobata EO and its constituents showed irritability activity, but only limonene repelled soldiers more than workers. The negative behaviors of N. corniger groups were higher in individuals treated with limonene. A. trilobata EO and its constituents, especially the limonene, are promising for the control of N. corniger due the high toxicity, repellence, and possible disturbance in the colonies.


Aristolochiaceae behavior botanical insecticides limonene terpenes 



We thank the Herbarium of the Federal University of Sergipe (ASE-UFS) for the identification of Aristolochia trilobata species.

Author Contribution

AAS, APAA, and LB conceived the study. AAS, CRM, BMSO, ASS, and ACCS performed experiments. TSS and AFB performed the chemical analyses. ASS and LB analyzed the data. AAS, APAA, PFC, and LB wrote the paper. All authors read and approved the manuscript.

Funding Information

This study was partially funded by the Brazilian National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq), the Foundation for Research Support and Technological Innovation of the State of Sergipe (FAPITEC/SE), and the Brazilian Federal Agency for the Support and Evaluation of Graduate Education (CAPES).


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Copyright information

© Sociedade Entomológica do Brasil 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Programa de Pós-Graduação em Agricultura e Biodiversidade (PPGAGRI)Univ Federal de SergipeSão CristóvãoBrasil
  2. 2.Depto de Engenharia AgronômicaUniv Federal de SergipeSão CristóvãoBrasil
  3. 3.Programa de Pós-Graduação em Entomologia Agrícola, Depto de AgronomiaUniv Federal Rural de PernambucoRecifeBrasil
  4. 4.Depto de EcologiaUniv Federal de SergipeSão CristóvãoBrasil

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