Chemical composition, larvicidal evaluation, and adult repellency of endemic Greek Thymus essential oils against the mosquito vector of West Nile virus

Danae Pitarokili, Antonios Michaelakis, George Koliopoulos, Athanassios Giatropoulos, Olga Tzakou
Parasitology Research 2011, 109 (2): 425-30
The volatile metabolites of Greek wild growing Thymus leucospermus and Thymus teucrioides subsp. candilicus were determined by gas chromatography and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. The monoterpene hydrocarbon p-cymene (64.2%) dominated T. leucospermus oil, followed by γ-terpinene (7.9%), thymol (4.8%), and borneol (4.7%), whereas the most abundant constituents in T. teucrioides subsp. candilicus oil were p-cymene (25.5%), γ-terpinene (19.0%), thymol (18.8%), borneol (5.7%), and α-pinene (5.7%). The larvicidal and repellent activities of the analyzed essential oils were tested on Culex pipiens larvae and adults, respectively. Additionally, the main metabolite of the essential oils, p-cymene was tested against C. pipiens adults in order to define the affiliation between p-cymene and the repellent properties of the oil. The essential oils of T. leucospermus and T. teucrioides subsp. candilicus provided repellency 78.1% and 72.9%, respectively, statistically equal to the reference product icaridin. The compound p-cymene showed almost no repellent activity. The essential oil of T. leucospermus presented lower larvicidal activity (LC(50) = 34.26 mgl(-1)) against C. pipiens third-fourth instar larvae while T. teucrioides subsp. candilicus was the most active with an estimated LC(50) value of 23.17 mgl(-1).

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