Binding Interactions, Structure-Activity Relationships and Blend Effects in Pheromone and Host Olfactory Detection of Herbivorous Lepidoptera

  • Mailyn Terrado
  • Govardhana R. Pinnelli
  • Jürgen Sanes
  • Erika PlettnerEmail author


Herbivorous moths (Lepidoptera) use their chemical senses (olfaction and gustation) for choosing their food (during larval stages) and for finding a mate (during adult life). Insects use chemosensory sensilla, hollow cuticular hairs that are innervated, for sensing chemical stimuli in their environment. These chemical stimuli (host plant odorants and pheromones) interact with the molecular components of the sensilla, which include: odorant-binding proteins (OBPs), odorant receptors (ORs) with their co-receptor (ORCO) and ionotropic receptors (IRs). Here we review the structures of moth pheromones and general odorants, as well as structural analogs, and how these molecules interact with OBPs, the structurally best characterized molecular components of insect chemosensory systems. We also review structure-activity relationships that have been obtained with systematically varied odorants. The activities that have been monitored include electrophysiological and behavioral responses.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mailyn Terrado
    • 1
  • Govardhana R. Pinnelli
    • 1
  • Jürgen Sanes
    • 1
  • Erika Plettner
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of ChemistrySimon Fraser UniversityBurnabyCanada

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