Maize landraces recruit egg and larval parasitoids in response to egg deposition by a herbivore

A - Papers appearing in refereed journals

Tamiru, A., Bruce, T. J. A., Woodcock, C. M., Caulfield, J. C., Midega, C. A. O., Ogol, C. K. P. O., Mayon, P., Birkett, M. A., Pickett, J. A. and Khan, Z. R. 2011. Maize landraces recruit egg and larval parasitoids in response to egg deposition by a herbivore. Ecology Letters. 14 (11), pp. 1075-1083.

AuthorsTamiru, A., Bruce, T. J. A., Woodcock, C. M., Caulfield, J. C., Midega, C. A. O., Ogol, C. K. P. O., Mayon, P., Birkett, M. A., Pickett, J. A. and Khan, Z. R.
Abstract

Natural enemies respond to herbivore-induced plant volatiles (HIPVs), but an often overlooked aspect is that there may be genotypic variation in these 'indirect' plant defence traits within plant species. We found that egg deposition by stemborer moths (Chile partellus) on maize landrace varieties caused emission of HIPVs that attract parasitic wasps. Notably, however, the oviposition-induced release of parasitoid attractants was completely absent in commercial hybrid maize varieties. In the landraces, not only were egg parasitoids (Trichogramma bournieri) attracted but also larval parasitoids (Cotesia sesamiae). This implies a sophisticated defence strategy whereby parasitoids are recruited in anticipation of egg hatching. The effect was systemic and caused by an elicitor, which could be extracted from egg materials associated with attachment to leaves. Our findings suggest that indirect plant defence traits may have become lost during crop breeding and could be valuable in new resistance breeding for sustainable agriculture.

KeywordsEcology
Year of Publication2011
JournalEcology Letters
Journal citation14 (11), pp. 1075-1083
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1111/j.1461-0248.2011.01674.x
PubMed ID21831133
Open accessPublished as non-open access
Funder project or codePDM
FunderInternational Foundation for Science (IFS)
Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council
European Union - EU
PublisherWiley
Grant IDDCI-FOOD.2010/230224
ISSN1461-023X

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