Royal Society Publishing

Abstract

Proteins isolated from the host cocoon of Acrolepiopsis assectella (Lepidoptera: Yponomeutoidea) act as kairomones for host acceptance by the endoparasitoid wasp Diadromus pulchellus Wesmael (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae). In this study, morphological, ultrastructural and electrophysiological studies were carried out in order to identify the contact chemoreceptive sensilla on the parasitoid antennae that perceive the protein kairomones. Three types of sensillum on the antennae of the females were found to have a chemosensory function. The receptor cell(s) of one sensillar type were shown to give a positive electrophysiological response to protein kairomones. This sensillar type is apically multiporous and female specific. Consequently, this sensillum could be the one implicated in the perception of the protein kairomone that triggers the host–acceptance behaviour of D. pulchellus females.

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