Discovery of Tetrasubstituted Pyrazines As Semiochemicals in a Sexually Deceptive Orchid Academic Article uri icon


  • Sexually deceptive orchids employ mimicry of insect sex pheromones to exploit a diverse group of pollinators. The chemical structures of five semiochemicals (1-3, 7, 8) produced by populations of the warty hammer orchid, Drakaea livida, pollinated by a thynnine wasp in the genus Catocheilus were elucidated. With the exception of (2,5-dimethylpyrazin-3-yl)methyl 3-methylbutanoate (7), all active compounds were tetrasubstituted pyrazines, including hydroxymethyl (1) and ester (2 and 3) trimethylpyrazine derivatives. Male Catocheilus wasps were responsive to all of these compounds in GC-EAD experiments.


  • Bohman, Björn
  • Jeffares, Lynne
  • Flematti, Gavin
  • Byrne, Lindsay T
  • Skelton, Brian W
  • Phillips, Ryan D
  • Dixon, Kingsley W
  • Peakall, Rod
  • Barrow, Russell A

publication date

  • 2012