Neotropical Entomology

, Volume 47, Issue 3, pp 418–428 | Cite as

Assessment of the Insecticidal Potential of the Eupatorium buniifolium Essential Oil Against Triatoma infestans (Hemiptera: Reduviidae). A Chiral Recognition Approach

  • A C Guerreiro
  • F M Cecati
  • C E Ardanáz
  • O J Donadel
  • C E Tonn
  • M E Sosa
Public Health


In this research, bioactivities toward the Chagas’ disease vector Triatoma infestans (Klug) (Hemiptera: Reduviidae) by the essential oil (EO) of Eupatorium buniifolium H. et A. (Asteraceae) are reported. The tests were designed in order to determine ovicidal activity as well as the response to vapor exposure (fumigant) and to topical application (contact toxicity) and as repellent. In the last three bioassays, nymphs from the 3rd and 4th instar were used. The assayed materials were obtained from aerial parts of plants collected during the months of March and December, throughout 4 years, in two locations. The EO samples were subjected to a qualitative analysis by GC-MS and the relative area of each component was reported by GC-FID. The main monoterpene detected was α-pinene and by using a chiral column through GC-MS experiments and having both stereoisomers as standards, we were able to determine that the enantiomer present was S,S-(−)-α-pinene. Although usually in studies of EOs changes in chemical composition are often observed due to the time of collection and the environment where the plant develops, in our case the differences were, with some exception, only at the level of the minor components. The best results were obtained in the experiments to determine ovicidal activity, fumigant action, and repellency. No worthy response was found as insecticide in the trials designed for contact toxicity. The results of the studied bioactivities were independent of the location, month, and year of collection of the plant material. This behavior provides an interesting scope in relation to the potential use of this natural blend for the control of this insect at the nymph stage as repellent as well as for decreasing the population by ovicidal effect. Notably, in the course of the two-choice repellency test, it was possible to demonstrate recognition of one of the enantiomers of the α-pinene, giving rise to a non-common chirality/response effect. In this assay, the levorotatory isomer was the most active as repellent. Considering the abundance of the wild plant under study and the fact that its EO is easy to obtain, it is suggested that it could be an adequate natural resource to control this vector in a sustainable way as a complementary approach to conventional methods.


Ovicidal activity Repellent Chagas disease Plant extracts Plant metabolites Nonoterpene 



This work is a part of the Ph D Thesis of ACG. Authors thanks to Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas (CONICET-PIP 090), and Universidad Nacional de San Luis (Project PROICO 2-2516) for the financial support. Thanks are also due to Dr. Walter Stege for the NMR experiments, and to Prof. Cristina Devia for their contribution in the statistical analysis. Thanks are also due to Reference Vector Centre, National Service for Chagas Disease for the biological material. CET is a member of the Scientific Research Career of CONICET. We appreciate language revision of the manuscript by the staff from the Institute of Languages of Universidad Nacional de San Luis.

Supplementary material

13744_2018_601_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (431 kb)
ESM 1 (PDF 430 kb)


  1. Abbott WS (1925) A method for computing the effectiveness of an insecticide. J Econ Entomol 18:265–267CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Adams RP (2007) Identification of essential oil components by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry, 4th Edition. Allured Publishing Corporation. Ill. USAGoogle Scholar
  3. Alzogaray R, Zerba E (2001) Behavioral response of fifth instar nymphs of Triatoma infestans (Hemiptera: Reduviidae) to pyrethroids. Acta Trop 78:51–57CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Arias AR, Lehane MJ, Schofield CJ, Fournet A (2003) Comparative evaluation of pyrethroid insecticide formulations against Triatoma infestans (Klug): residual efficacy on four substrates. Mem Inst Oswaldo Cruz 98(7):975–980CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Carvajal G, Mougabure-Cueto G, Toloza AC (2012) Toxicity of non-pyrethroid insecticides against Triatoma infestans (Hemiptera: Reduviidae). Mem Inst Oswaldo Cruz 107(5):675–679CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. D’Acampora Zellner B, Dugo P, Dugo G, Mondello L (2010) Analysis of essential Oils. Handbook of Essential Oils, Science, Technology, and Applications. CRC Press, Florida, pp, 158Google Scholar
  7. Davies NW (1990) Gas chromatographic retention indices of monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes on methyl silicone and Carbowax 20M phases. J Chromatogr 503:1–24CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Dewick, PM (2002) Medicinal natural products. John Wiley & Sons, England, p 175–177Google Scholar
  9. Erbilgin N, Szele A, Klepzig KD, Raffia KF (2001) Trap type, chirality of α-pinene, and geographic region affect sampling efficiency of root and lower stem insects in pine. J Econ Entomol 94:1113–1121CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. García M, Donadel OJ, Ardanáz CE, Tonn CE, Sosa ME (2005) Toxic and repellent effects of Baccharis salicifolia (Ruiz y Pavon) Pers. (Asteraceae) essential oil on Tribolium castaneum (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae). Pest Manag Sci 61:612–618CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. García M, González-Coloma A, Donadel OJ, Ardanáz CE, Tonn CE, Sosa ME (2007) Insecticidal effects of Flourensia oolepis Blake (Asteraceae) essential oil. Biochem Sys Ecol 35:181–187CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Germano MD, Picollo MI, Mougabure-Cueto GA (2013) Microgeographical study of insecticide resistance in Triatoma infestans from Argentina. Acta Trop 128:561–565CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. Gomes SP, Favero S (2013) Assessment of the insecticidal potential of Eucalyptus urograndis essential oil against Rhodnius neglectus lent (Hemiptera: Reduviidae). Neotrop Entomol 42(4):431–435CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. Hansson BS, Stensmyr MC (2011) Evolution of insect olfaction. Neuron 72(5):698–711CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. Kovats E (1958) Gas-chromatographische Charakterisierung organischer Verbindungen. Teil 1: Retentions indices aliphatischer Halogenide, Alkohole, Aldehyde und Ketone. Helv Chim Acta 41:1915–1932CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Kurdelas R, Lopez S, Lima B, Feresin G, Zygadlo J, Zacchino S, Lopez ML, Tapia A, Freile M (2012) Chemical composition, anti-insect and antimicrobial activity of Baccharis darwinii essential oil from Argentina, Patagonia. Ind Crops and Prod 40:261–267CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Laska M, Galizia CG (2001) Enantioselectivity of odor perception on honeybees (Apis melifera carnica). Behav Neurosci 115(3):632–639CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. Lozano ES, Spina R, Tonn CE, Sosa MA, Cifuente DA (2015) An abietane diterpene from Salvia cuspidata and some new derivatives are active against Trypanosoma cruzi. Biorg Med Chem Letters 25:5481–5484CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Lozano E, Strauss M, Spina R, Cifuente D, Tonn CE, Rivarola HW, Sosa MA (2016) The in vivo trypanocidal effect of the diterpene 5-epi-icetexone obtained from Salvia gilliesii. Parasitol Int 65:23–26CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  20. Marettova E, Maretta M, Legáthb J (2017) Effect of pyrethroids on female genital system. Review. Animal Reproduction Science
  21. McLafferty FW, Stauffer DB (1989) Wiley/NBS registry of mass spectral data, 5th ed. Wiley, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  22. Mougabure-Cueto G, Picollo MI (2015) Insecticide resistance in vector Chagas disease: evolution, mechanisms and management. Acta Trop 149:70–85CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  23. Messchendorp L, Van Loon JJA, Gols GJZ (1996) Behavioural and sensory responses to drimane antifeedants in Pieris brassicae larvae. Entomol Exp Appl 82:278–291Google Scholar
  24. Parra-Henao G, Garcia CM, Pajón M, Cotes Torres JM (2007) Actividad insecticida de extractos vegetales sobre Rhodnius prolixus y Rhodnius pallescens (Hemiptera: Reduviidae). Bol Mal Salud Amb 47(1):125–137Google Scholar
  25. Phillips TW, Jiang XL, Burkholder WE, Phillips JK, Tran HQ (1993) Behavioral responses to food volatiles by two species of stored-product coleoptera, Sitophilus oryzae (Curculionidae) and Tribolium castaneum Tenebrionidae. J Chem Ecol 19(4):723–734CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  26. Regnault-Roger C, Hamraoui A (1995) Fumigant toxic activity and reproductive inhibition induced by monoterpenes on Acanthoscelides obtectus (say) (Coleoptera), a bruchid of kidney bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) J Stored Prod Res 31:291–299CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Rice PJ, Coats JR (1994) Insecticidal properties of several monoterpenoids to the housefly (Diptera: Muscidae), red flour beetle (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae), and southern com rootworm (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae). J Econ Entomol 87:1172–1179CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  28. Sakuma M (1998) Probit analysis of preference data. Applied Entomol Zool 33:339–347CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Sanchez AM, Jimenez-Ortiz V, Sartor T, Tonn CE, García EE, Nieto M, Burgos MH, Sosa MA (2006) A novel icetexane diterpene, 5-epi-icetexone from Salvia gilliesi, is active against Trypanosoma cruzi. Acta Trop 98(2):118–124CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  30. Schmeda-Hirschmann G, Arias AR (1992) A screening method for natural products on triatominae bugs. Phytother Res 6:68–73CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Sosa ME, Lancelle HG, Tonn CE, Andres MF, Gonzalez-Coloma A (2012) Insecticidal and nematicidal essential oils from Argentinean Eupatorium and Baccharis spp. Biochem Sys Ecol 43:132–138CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Valladares GR, Ferreyra UD, Defago MT, Carpinella MC, Palacios S (1999) Effects of Melia azedarach on Triatoma infestans. Fitoterapia 70:421–424CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Sociedade Entomológica do Brasil 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Área de Zoología, Depto de Bioquímica y Ciencias BiológicasUniv Nacional de San LuisSan LuisArgentina
  2. 2.INTEQUI-CONICET-UNSLSan LuisArgentina

Personalised recommendations