News International Sugar Journal

Studies with wild tobacco plants reveal new approach to pest control [Registered]

Researchers in USA and Germany have demonstrated that the release of volatiles which attract enemies of herbivores not only controls insect pests, but also increases the reproduction of infested plants. Transferred to the goals of integrated pest management, this means that these natural plant defenses can be utilized to improve and increase agricultural yields in an environmentally friendly manner. These findings were published online on 15 October 2012 in the open-access journal eLife. For three decades, ecologists have observed that plants emit specific volatiles after herbivory, causing a striking effect: they can reduce the number of insect attackers on a…

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