Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Mode of action of etoxazole.

Abstract

The mode of action of the 2,4-diphenyl-1,3-oxazoline acaricide/insecticide etoxazole has been argued to be moulting inhibition, but experimental results supporting this hypothesis are lacking. This study investigated the effect of etoxazole on chitin biosynthesis in the fall armyworm, Spodoptera frugiperda (Smith) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae). Etoxazole induced moulting defects in fall armyworm larvae similar, if not identical, to those caused by benzoylphenylureas, a well-known class of insecticidal chitin biosynthesis inhibitors. Furthermore, in contrast to untreated larvae, the chitin content in the integuments of larvae several days after treatment did not differ from that in freshly ecdysed individuals, thus suggesting strong chitin biosynthesis inhibition in vivo. A more detailed investigation of the inhibitory potential by incubating cultured integument pieces from larvae of S. frugiperda with [14C]N-acetyl-D-glucosamine, a radiolabelled chitin precursor, revealed I50 values of 2.95 and 0.071 µM for etoxazole and triflumuron respectively. The incorporation of radiolabel into potassium hydroxide-resistant material was inhibited by etoxazole in a dose-dependent manner. Based on these results, it is concluded that the acaricidal and insecticidal mode of action of etoxazole is chitin biosynthesis inhibition.