Impacts of Induction of Plant Volatiles by Individual and Multiple Stresses Across Trophic Levels

  • Martín ParejaEmail author
  • Delia M. Pinto-Zevallos
Part of the Signaling and Communication in Plants book series (SIGCOMM)


Plants are constantly challenged by many different stresses, ranging from abiotic factors, such as ultraviolet light and ozone, to herbivores and pathogens. To defend themselves against these challenges, plants activate defences that are specific to each stressor. One such defence is the emission of induced volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that can directly reduce the intensity of the stress or, in the case of herbivores, attract predators and parasitoids, in what is known as indirect defence. In nature, however, plants are rarely subject to stress by a single agent. In this chapter, we review what is known about the ecological effects of induced plant VOCs against individual and multiple stresses. First, we describe the biochemical responses against individual stressors that result in the emission of VOCs and how they can be modified by multiple stresses. We then discuss how plant VOCs can have an impact on herbivores, herbivore natural enemies and plant mutualists. We finish by discussing how future research should begin to investigate the importance of induced responses to multiple stresses in structuring plant-based communities.


Natural Enemy Multiple Stress Lima Bean Induce Plant Defence Aboveground Herbivore 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



We are grateful to James Blande and Robert Glinwood for the invitation to write this chapter and comments on previous versions. The ideas presented in this chapter greatly benefited from conversations with Gabriela Gomes, James Blande, João Oliveira, Luiz Henrique Rezende, Mônica Kersch-Becker, Rodolfo Faria Silva and Thiago Marinho Alvarenga. During writing, MP was supported by a FAEPEX-PAPDIC grant from UNICAMP and CNPq project 474449/2012-2. DMP-Z was funded by the Fundação de Apoio a Pesquisa e Inovação Tecnológica de Sergipe—FAPITEC.


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© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Departamento de Biologia Animal, Instituto de BiologiaUniversidade Estadual de Campinas—UNICAMPCampinasBrazil
  2. 2.Laboratório de Ecologia Química, Departamento de Ecologia, Centro de Ciências Biológicas e da SaúdeUniversidade Federal de Sergipe—UFSSão CristóvãoBrazil

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