The low aqueous solubility and chiral complexity of synthetic pyrethroids, together with large differences between isomers in their insecticidal potency, have hindered the development of meaningful assays of their metabolism and metabolic resistance to them. To overcome these problems, Shan and Hammock (2001)  therefore developed fluorogenic and more water-soluble analogues of all the individual isomers of the commonly used Type 2 pyrethroids, cypermethrin and fenvalerate. The analogues have now been used in several studies of esterase-based metabolism and metabolic resistance. Here we test the validity of these analogues by quantitatively comparing their hydrolysis by a battery of 22 heterologously expressed insect esterases with the hydrolysis of the corresponding pyrethroid isomers by these esterases in an HPLC assay recently developed by Teese etal. (2013) . We find a strong, albeit not complete, correlation (r = 0.7) between rates for the two sets of substrates. The three most potent isomers tested were all relatively slowly degraded in both sets of data but three esterases previously associated with pyrethroid resistance in Helicoverpa armigera did not show higher activities for these isomers than did allelic enzymes derived from susceptible H.armigera. Given their amenability to continuous assays at low substrate concentrations in microplate format, and ready detection of product, we endorse the ongoing utility of the analogues in many metabolic studies of pyrethroids.
Bibliographical noteCopyright the Author(s) 2014. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.
- Fluorogenic analogues