Fumigant toxicity of volatile natural products from Korean spices and medicinal plants towards the rice weevil, Sitophilus oryzae (L)

Sung Eun Lee, Byoung Ho Lee, Won Sik Choi, Byeoung Soo Park, Jeong Gyu Kim, Bruce C. Campbell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

144 Citations (Scopus)


The fumigant toxicity of various volatile constituents of essential oils extracted from sixteen Korean spices and medicinal plants towards the rice weevil, Sitophilus oryzae L (Coleoptera: Curculionidae), was determined. The most potent toxicity was found in the essential oil from Mentha arvensis L var piperascens (LC50 = 45.5 μl litre-1 air). GC-MS analysis of essential oil from M arvensis showed it to be rich in menthol (63.2%), menthone (13.1%) and limonene (1.5%), followed in abundance by β-pinene (0.7%), α-pinene (0.6%) and linalool (0.2%). Treatment of S oryzae with each of these terpenes showed menthone to be most active (LC50 = 12.7 μl litre-1 air) followed by linalool (LC50 = 39.2 μl litre-1 air) and α-pinene (LC50 = 54.9 μl litre-1 air). Studies on inhibition of acetylcholinesterase activity of S oryzae showed menthone to have a nine-fold lower inhibitory effect than menthol, despite menthone being 8.1-fold more toxic than menthol to the rice weevil. Different modes of toxicity of these monoterpenes towards S oryzae are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)548-553
Number of pages6
JournalPest Management Science
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2001 Jun 18
Externally publishedYes



  • Acetylcholinesterase inhibition
  • Essential oils
  • Fumigant toxicity
  • Mentha arvensis
  • Menthol
  • Menthone
  • Rice weevil
  • Sitophilus oryzae

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Insect Science

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