Anti-termite and antimicrobial efficacy of latexes from certain plant families

Dr. Ravi Kant Upadhyay


The present article explains the effect of plant latex and its formulations on termite control. Latex is natural plant
polymer secreted by highly specialized cells known as laticifers. It is a milky white thick complex mixture of
proteins, alkaloids, starch, sugars, oils, tannins, resins, and gums. Both latex and its components show multiple
deleterious effects such as toxic, antifeedant, and repellent activities. These effectively inhibit growth and
reproductive behavior in number of insect species. Latex components delay egg maturation, development, and
inhibit gonad development in termites. Latex constituents display contact and systemic action and primarily used
as poison baits to control soil termite. Latex-based combinatorial anti-termite formulations could be used in spray
for termite control. The usage is safer than synthetic chemicals and will minimize the risk of poisoning of food
chain, soil, and aqueous environment. This review article suggests the use of slow release of latex components
inside soil when applied as poison baits for control of field termites.

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