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TitleLarvicidal, molluscicidal and nematicidal activities of essential oils and compounds from Foeniculum vulgare
Author(s)Sousa, Rose Marie O. F.
Rosa, Jose S.
Silva, Claudia A.
Almeida, Maria Teresa M.
Teresa Novo, M.
Cunha, Ana
Ferreira, Manuel Fernandes
Bitter fennel essential oils
Anopheles atroparvus
Meloidogyne javanica
Radix peregra
Brine shrimp lethality assay
Issue date2015
PublisherSpringer Heidelberg
JournalJournal of Pest Science
Abstract(s)Plant-based products, namely essential oils (EOs), are environmentally friendly alternatives for the control of disease vectors, hosts and/or parasites. Here, we studied the general toxicity and biopesticidal potential of EOs and phenylpropanoids from Foeniculum vulgare var. vulgare (bitter fennel), a perennial plant well adapted to temperate climates. EO/compound toxicity was tested against a freshwater snail and potential intermediate host of Fasciola hepatica (Radix peregra), a mosquito and former European malaria vector (Anopheles atroparvus) and one of the most damaging plant-parasitic nematodes, the root-knot nematode (Meloidogyne javanica). Lethal concentrations (LC50; LC90) of EOs (infrutescences/stems with leaves) and compounds were calculated by probit analysis. All displayed noteworthy activity against R. peregra adults (LC50 21-39 A mu g ml(-1)) and A. atroparvus larvae (LC50 16-56 A mu g ml(-1)). trans-Anethole revealed acute nematicidal activity after 24 and 48 h (LC50 310 and 249 A mu g ml(-1), respectively), and estragole (1,000 A mu g ml(-1)) showed some effectiveness against M. javanica hatching and juveniles after 15 days. Plant and EO yields were determined to evaluate the bitter fennel productivity. The chemical composition of the EOs was analyzed by gas chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry. EOs extracted from whole plants, infrutescences and stems with leaves were characterized by estragole-dominant profiles (28-65 %), considerable amounts of phellandrene (10-34 %) and fenchone (6-16 %), and minor trans-anethole contents (1-4 %). Although additional toxicological studies against nontarget organisms are required, our study demonstrates that bitter fennel is a productive source of molluscicides and larvicides, and thus a potential sustainable biological agent to control particular host species, namely freshwater snails and mosquitoes.
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