Structure and function of Dufour gland pheromones from the crazy ant Paratrechina longicornis

Volker Witte, Leif Abrell, Athula B. Attygalle, Xiaogang Wu, Jerrold Meinwald

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Dufour glands of Paratrechina longicornis were analyzed chemically using GC-MS techniques. The glands contained twelve alkanes between C9 and C20 chain length with undecane and tridecane as the main components, six alkenes (1- and 4-undecene, 1-, 4-, and 6- tridecene, and heptadecadiene), two alkyl formates (C11 and C13), and saturated and polyunsaturated acids. Many of the alkanes and alkenes were behaviorally active causing a short lasting attraction of ants with different intensity. Detection of the major gland compound undecane in recruitment trails by in vivo SPME sampling provided evidence for its use as a recruitment pheromone. Both poison gland (formic acid) and Dufour gland (undecane) contents were detected on SPME fibers which had been attacked by the ants.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)63-69
Number of pages7
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2007


  • Alarm
  • Chemical communication
  • Dufour gland
  • Hydrocarbons
  • Paratrechina longicornis
  • Recruitment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Biochemistry


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