Pyrethroid Insecticides: Esterase Cleavage in Relation to Selective Toxicity

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  23 Mar 1973:
Vol. 179, Issue 4079, pp. 1235-1236
DOI: 10.1126/science.179.4079.1235


The ester group of primary alcohol chrysanthemates is cleaved by mouse hepatic microsomal esterases, more rapidly for the (+)-trans than for the (+)-cis isomers. Substrate-specificity and inhibition studies in vivo establish that these pyrethroid-hydrolyzing esterases probably contribute to the low mammalian toxicity of bioresmethrin and other (+)-trans chrysanthemate insecticide chemicals derived from primary alcohols.