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Lookup NU author(s): Emeritus Professor Jerry Barnes,
Dr Gordon Port
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Elevated levels of tropospheric ozone and their effects on plants have been studied for a great number of years. Ozone is a gaseous pollutant and acts as a phytotoxin. Even though ozone is known to change the physiology of plants, little attention has been given to the indirect effects of ozone on plant-insect interactions. This paper addresses this question by investigating the interactive effects of ozone and plant genotype on insects. Lines of rapid-cycling Brassica rapa (L.) selected for their contrasting sensitivity to ozone and Pieris brassicae (L.) (Lepidoptera: Pieridae) were used as a model system. The effect of differences in ozone sensitivity and ozone fumigation on the plant's carbon and nitrogen pools, the feeding preference, and behaviour of P. brassicae larvae were investigated. The results show that the plant's susceptibility to ozone interacts in a complex way with ozone induced alterations in the suitability of the plant for the insect. Only the larval performance on the sensitive line was affected by ozone exposure. Biochemical changes in the resistant B. rapa line made the plant a better food source for the insects, since the digestibility of this plant was significantly higher than that of the sensitive line, and the larvae pupated more quickly and were heavier.
Author(s): Jondrup PM, Barnes JD, Port GR
Publication type: Article
Publication status: Published
Journal: Entomologia Experimentalis et Applicata
ISSN (print): 0013-8703
ISSN (electronic): 1570-7458
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
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