Insecticidal and Acaricidal Activity of Essential Oils Rich in (E)-Nerolidol from Melaleuca leucadendra Occurring in the State of Pernambuco (Brazil) and Effects on Two Important Agricultural Pests


J. Braz. Chem. Soc.




Essential oils from the leaves, stems, flowers and fruits of Melaleuca leucadendra growing in the state of Pernambuco, Brazil, were analyzed using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS). The effects of the oils and their major constituent were evaluated on the agricultural pests Tetranychus urticae and Plutella xylostella in different stages of development. The analysis revealed a M. leucadendra chemotype rich in (E)-nerolidol (81.78 ± 0.90 to 95.78 ± 1.20%). P. xylostella was more susceptible to the oils and major constituent than T. urticae. The fruit oil was 1.5-fold more toxic than the leaf oil to T. urticae eggs. (E)-Nerolidol was 5.5-fold and 4.5-fold more toxic to T. urticae adults than the leaf and fruit oils, respectively. Azamax® used as the positive control was more efficient than the oils and (E)-nerolidol against T. urticae. However, the oils and (E)-nerolidol were more toxic to P. xylostella than Azamax®.

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