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  SpitWorm, an herbivorous robot: Mechanical leaf wounding with simultaneous application of salivary components

Li, G., Bartram, S., Guo, H., Mithöfer, A., Kunert, M., & Boland, W. (2019). SpitWorm, an herbivorous robot: Mechanical leaf wounding with simultaneous application of salivary components. Plants, 8(9): 318. doi:10.3390/plants8090318.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/plants8090318 (Publisher version)
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 Creators:
Li, Guanjun1, 2, Author              
Bartram, Stefan1, 3, Author              
Guo, Huijuan, Author
Mithöfer, Axel4, Author              
Kunert, Maritta1, 3, Author              
Boland, Wilhelm1, Author              
Affiliations:
1Department of Bioorganic Chemistry, Prof. Dr. W. Boland, MPI for Chemical Ecology, Max Planck Society, ou_24028              
2IMPRS on Ecological Interactions, MPI for Chemical Ecology, Max Planck Society, Jena, DE, ou_421900              
3Department of Natural Product Biosynthesis, Prof. Dr. Sarah O'Connor, MPI for Chemical Ecology, Max Planck Society, ou_3011808              
4Research Group Plant Defense Physiology, Dr. Axel Mithöfer, MPI for Chemical Ecology, Max Planck Society, ou_3022756              

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 Abstract: Induction of plant defense against insect herbivory is initiated by a combination of both, mechanical wounding and chemical factors. In order to study both effects independently on plant defense induction, SpitWorm, a computer controlled device which mimics the damage pattern of feeding insect larvae on leaves and can additionally apply oral secretions (OS) or other solutions to the ‘biting site’ during ‘feeding’, was developed and evaluated. The amount of OS left by a Spodoptera littoralis larva during feeding on Phaseolus lunatus (lima bean) leaves was estimated by combining larval foregut volume, biting rate, and quantification of a fluorescent dye injected into the larvae’s foregut prior to feeding. For providing OS amounts by SpitWorm equivalent to larval feeding, dilution and delivery rate were optimized. The effectiveness of SpitWorm was tested by comparing volatile organic compounds (VOC) emissions of P. lunatus leaves treated with either SpitWorm, MecWorm or S. littoralis larvae. Identification and quantification of emitted VOCs revealed that SpitWorm induced a volatile bouquet that is qualitatively and quantitatively similar to herbivory. Additionally, RT-qPCR of four jasmonic acid responsive genes showed that SpitWorm, in contrast to MecWorm, induces the same regulation pattern as insect feeding. Thus, SpitWorm mimics insect herbivory almost identical to real larvae feeding.

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 Dates: 2019-08-262019-09-01
 Publication Status: Published online
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 Identifiers: Other: BOL718
DOI: 10.3390/plants8090318
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Title: Plants
Source Genre: Journal
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Publ. Info: Basel : MDPI
Pages: - Volume / Issue: 8 (9) Sequence Number: 318 Start / End Page: - Identifier: ISSN: 2223-7747
CoNE: https://pure.mpg.de/cone/journals/resource/2223-7747