Progress in the Identification of the Compounds in the Kudzu Bug, Megacopta cribraria

Monday, March 14, 2016
Oak Forest Ballroom Prefunction Area (Sheraton Raleigh Hotel)
Heather Clontz , Chemistry and Physics, Wingate University, Wingate, NC
Erika Niland , Biology, Wingate University, Wingate, NC
The kudzu bug, Megacopta cribraria, originated from Asia and first appeared in the southeastern United States in 2009.  Since then the kudzu bugs have increased in number and the area in which they live.  Along with being an agricultural pest, they are also a nuisance pest because they aggregate on houses in the vicinity of kudzu patches – their preferred host.  While much work has been done to identify the chemicals present in other stink bugs, this research focuses on the identification of the chemicals present in the kudzu bug.  Adult female, adult male, and immature stink bugs were collected at various times and stored dichloromethane.  The samples were analyzed using gas chromatography/mass spectrometry.  Preliminary results show that many of the compound present are ones found in many other stink bugs, such as hydrocarbons and aldehydes, but there are compounds present that have not been seen in previous stink bugs.  The identification and classification of these compounds could help to determine what signals aggregation.