Antinutritive and oxidative components as mechanisms of induced resistance in cotton to Helicoverpa zea

J. L. Bi, J. B. Murphy, G. W. Felton

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Induced resistance in cotton (Gossypium hirsutum) foliage and squares to herbivory by Helicoverpa zea (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) is reported in this study. Induced resistance was indicated by decreased larval growth when larvae fed on previously damaged foliage or squares compared to the controls. Herbivory caused a significant decline in host nutritional quality as shown by a reduction in protein and most amino acids in both foliage and squares. Peroxidase, ascorbate oxidase, and diamine oxidase activities increased in both damaged foliage and squares, whereas levels of the nutritional antioxidant, ascorbate, were depressed after larval feeding. Larval feeding also markedly enhanced lipoxygenase activity and lipid peroxides in square tissues. Moreover, feeding damage altered the quantitative levels of phenolic compounds in foliage and squares. These results indicate a significant shift in the oxidative status of cotton plants following herbivory as indicated by increased oxidative enzyme activity, decreased levels of the nutritional antioxidant ascorbate, and increased levels of phenolic prooxidants (i.e., chlorogenic acid) and lipid peroxides.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)97-117
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Chemical Ecology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1997

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Biochemistry


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