Info-disruption: pollution and the transfer of chemical information between organisms

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Many organisms use subtle chemical cues not only to find partners and food, but also to sense the presence of natural enemies and to avoid predation. As we discuss here, an increasing number of studies now show that low, non-toxic concentrations of chemicals, ranging from heavy metals and pesticides to seemingly harmless substances such as surfactants, can disrupt the transfer of chemical information, inducing maladaptive responses in both the signaller and the receiver. Similar to endocrine disruptors, these `info disruptors¿ form a new class of chemical threats, which could have far-reaching implications for ecosystem functioning and conservation management.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)374-379
JournalTrends in Ecology and Evolution
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2007


  • sex pheromonal communication
  • predator avoidance-behavior
  • red-spotted newt
  • asian corn-borer
  • insecticide chlorpyrifos
  • trichogramma-brassicae
  • antipredatory behavior
  • ostrinia-furnacalis
  • vertical migration
  • induced morphology


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