Document Detail

Chemical and olfactory characterization of odorous compounds and their precursors in the parotoid gland secretion of the green tree frog, Litoria caerulea.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  14584677     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
When stressed or challenged by a predator, the Australian green tree frog, Litoria caerulea, emits a characteristic nutty odor from its parotoid glands. This study identifies the source of the odor as the cyclic amide 2-pyrrolidone (2-PyrO). In addition, we demonstrate the presence of 2-PyrO's straight chain form, gamma-aminobutyric acid or GABA, in the frog's glandular secretion and propose an odorant-precursor relationship. What role both compounds play in the frog's defensive strategy remains unknown. Prolonged exposure to the odor is shown to result in adverse effects that may be attributed to a GABAergic mechanism. It is our hypothesis, however, that the odor acts as an aposematic signal, indicating the toxicity of the frog's nonvolatile secretion.
Benjamin P C Smith; Michael J Tyler; Brian D Williams; Yoji Hayasaka
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of chemical ecology     Volume:  29     ISSN:  0098-0331     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Chem. Ecol.     Publication Date:  2003 Sep 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2003-10-30     Completed Date:  2004-02-10     Revised Date:  2006-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  7505563     Medline TA:  J Chem Ecol     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  2085-100     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Environmental Biology, University of Adelaide, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia 5005.
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MeSH Terms
Animal Communication
Anura / physiology*
GABA Modulators / pharmacology
Parotid Gland / secretion*
Predatory Behavior
Pyrrolidinones / chemistry*,  isolation & purification*
Reg. No./Substance:
0/GABA Modulators; 0/Pyrrolidinones; 616-45-5/2-pyrrolidone

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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