Plant-insect dialogs: complex interactions at the plant-insect interface

  • Felton G
  • Tumlinson J
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Abstract

Although five different classes of insect herbivore-produced elicitors of plant volatiles have been identified, this is only a part of the complex, chemically mediated interactions between insect herbivores and their host plants. The defensive reactions of the plant, following physical injury by the herbivore, are influenced by a multitude of factors including, but not necessarily limited to, the elicitors and numerous other herbivore-associated molecules, as well as microbes on the plant surface that may alter plant defensive pathways. Ultimately, a thorough and accurate understanding of the chemical ecology of insect-plant interactions will require a more holistic approach, taking into consideration the ecological and physiological context in which a plant perceives and responds to herbivore-associated signals. © 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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