Bombykal, a Sex Pheromone of the Sphinx Moth Manduca Sexta

Alvin N. Starratt, Norman Allen, John G. Hildebrand, Thomas L. Payne, Herbert Röller, Karl H. Dahm

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

61 Scopus citations


The first sex pheromone of a Sphinx moth has been isolated from Manduca sexta (Lepidoptera: Sphingidae) with the aid of an electroantennogram assay. It is attractive to males in a field test where its activity might be augmented by a second component in female extracts. Chemical tests and chromatographic properties identify the pheromone as a C16-aldehyde with a pair of conjugated double bonds. (E, Z)-10, 12-hexadecadienal, (“bombykal”) was identical with the natural product. The comparison includes chromatography on three different capillary columns and determination of specific activities in the electroantennogram test.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)9-12
Number of pages4
JournalZeitschrift fur Naturforschung - Section C Journal of Biosciences
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Feb 1 1979


  • Manduca sexta
  • Pheromones
  • Sex Attractant

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology


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