Annual Report 2001 - Cornell University
003 Selected Faculty Research

03 Controlling Insects Naturally

Thomas Eisner, Neurobiology and Behavior, and colleagues discovered that the same chemicals that attract pollinating insects also repel herbivore insects. The chemicals, called DIPs (dearomatized isoprenylated phloroglucinols), color some flowers in bull's eye patterns, which are unrecognizable to human eyes, but can be seen by some insects with ultraviolet vision. The patterns attract some insects and deter or cause the death of others to protect their reproductive apparatus. Although the researchers studied the Hypericum calycinum flower, antifeedant chemicals like DIPs are found in other species, such as hops, which are used in beer making. These chemicals have implications for natural insect control agents.

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© 2002 by the Office of the Vice Provost for Research [OVPR], Cornell University.

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