Research output: Contribution to journal › Journal article
|Journal publication date||2008|
|Journal||Plant, Cell and Environment|
|Number of pages||6|
Isoprene (C5H8, 2-methyl 1,3-butadiene) is synthesized and emitted by many, but not all, plants. Unlike other related volatile organic compounds (monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes), isoprene has not been shown to mediate plant-herbivore interactions. Here, for the first time, we show, in feeding choice tests using isoprene-emitting transgenic tobacco plants (Nicotiana tabacum cv. Samsun) and non-emitting azygous control plants, that isoprene deters Manduca sexta caterpillars from feeding. This avoidance behaviour was confirmed using an artificial (isoprene-emitting and non-emitting control) diet. Both in vivo and in vitro experiments showed that isoprene can activate feeding avoidance behaviour in this system with a dose-response effect on caterpillar behaviour and an isoprene emission threshold level of < 6 nmol m(-2) s(-1).