Print version ISSN 0100-8358
SOUZA FILHO, A.P.S; TREZZI, M.M and IOUE, M.H. Seeds as alternative source of chemical substances with allelopathic activity. Planta daninha [online]. 2011, vol.29, n.3, pp. 709-716. ISSN 0100-8358. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0100-83582011000300025.
In the literature, leaves predominate as preferred source of studies of promising allelopathic compounds, but information on other plant fractions are also found. This trend is due to the fact that most studies show that leaves have higher allelopathic potential than other plant fractions. In this review, we compiled and analyzed the information available on the importance of seeds as an alternative source of chemical compounds with allelopathic activity. We discussed the variations in production and allocation of allelochemicals at different ontogenetic stages of the seeds in the seed bank. The role played by the allelochemicals produced by the seeds on insect repellency, inhibition of the development of pathogens in seeds, initial development of competing plants and as positive signaling for the symbiosis with soil microbes were also studied. The allelopathic activity of several compounds isolated from the seeds was presented, especially alkaloids, flavonoids, resins, and benzoxazinoid glucosides. Studies of allelochemicals produced by the seeds can contribute significantly to a better understanding of the ecological role they play in the chemical ecology of agro-ecosystems and ecosystems.
Keywords : allelochemicals; role played in seeds; insect repellency; weed inhibition; pathogen inhibition.