Abstract: Despite the sanitary importance of the European house dust mite Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus (Trouessart, 1897), the pheromonal communication in this species has not been sufficiently studied. Headspace analysis using solid phase micro extraction (SPME) revealed that nerol, neryl formate, pentadecane, (6Z,9Z)-6,9-heptadecadiene, and (Z)-8-heptadecene are released by both sexes whereas neryl propionate was released by males only. Tritonymphs did not produce any detectable volatiles. In olfactometer experiments, pentadecane and neryl propionate were attractive to both sexes as well as to tritonymphs. (Z)-8-heptadecene was only attractive to male mites. Therefore it is discussed that pentadecane and neryl propionate are aggregation pheromones and (Z)-8-heptadecene is a sexual pheromone of the European house dust mite D. pteronyssinus. To study the potential use of pheromones in dust mite control, long-range olfactometer experiments were conducted showing that mites can be attracted to neryl propionate over distances of at least 50 cm. This indicates that mite pheromones might be useable to monitor the presence or absence of mites in the context of control strategies.
Keywords: chemical communication; aggregation pheromones; sexual pheromones; alarm pheromones; tritonymphs; house dust mite pest control
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Steidle, J.L.; Barcari, E.; Hradecky, M.; Trefz, S.; Tolasch, T.; Gantert, C.; Schulz, S. Pheromonal Communication in the European House Dust Mite, Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus. Insects 2014, 5, 639-650.
Steidle JL, Barcari E, Hradecky M, Trefz S, Tolasch T, Gantert C, Schulz S. Pheromonal Communication in the European House Dust Mite, Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus. Insects. 2014; 5(3):639-650.
Steidle, Johannes L.; Barcari, Elena; Hradecky, Marc; Trefz, Simone; Tolasch, Till; Gantert, Cornelia; Schulz, Stefan. 2014. "Pheromonal Communication in the European House Dust Mite, Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus." Insects 5, no. 3: 639-650.