Ant Alarm Pheromone Activity: Correlation with Molecular Shape by Scanning Computer

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Science  19 Sep 1969:
Vol. 165, Issue 3899, pp. 1266-1269
DOI: 10.1126/science.165.3899.1266


The ant Iridomyrmex pruinosus utilizes 2-heptanone as an alarm pheromone. The activities of 49 ketones and 35 nonketones as alarm pheromones for this species were determined. The molecular shapes of these compounds were assessed by submitting silhouette photographs of their molecular models to a pattern recognition machine. A highly significant correlation exists between molecular shape and alarm activity.

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