Physic nut (Jatropha Curcas L.) extracts and active compounds with biological activity against pest insects and pathogenic fungi

Liliana C. Córdova-Albores, Silvia Bautista-Baños, Laura L. Barrera-Necha, Miguel Salvador-Figueroa, Ma De Lourdes Adriano-Anaya, Isidro Ovando-Medina

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


Jatropha curcas belongs to the family Euphorbiaceae. This plant is native to tropical America, and it can be found abundantly in many tropical and subtropical regions. Because of its tremendous industrial potential, it is cultivated in various countries and its use has been the subject of numerous studies. The genus Jatropha is composed of approximately 175 species. Among the species with pesticidal and fungicidal properties is J. curcas. Studies have shown that leaf and stem extracts, seed oil and the chemical constituents of this plant species control numerous pest insects of agricultural importance such as Helicoverpa armigera, Callosobruchus maculatus, Sitophilus zeamais, Fusarium oxysporum, Botrytis cinerea and Rhizoctonia solani, among others. Of the isolated active compounds of J. curcas, curcin and diterpenes, including phorbol esters, have shown notable biological activity against pathogenic pests and diseases. In this chapter, the possible mechanism of action associated with disruptions to the cell wall structure and organelles is also shown, although more information on this matter should be generated. As shown in the literature review, extracts of J. curcas plant organs, including seeds, leaves, stem and their derivatives, have active potential for possible pesticide and fungicide use in various horticultural commodities; however, more information about the possible toxicological effects should be obtained and analyzed.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Promising Future of Jatropha Curcas
Subtitle of host publicationProperties and Potential Applications
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.
Number of pages21
ISBN (Electronic)9781634850155
ISBN (Print)9781634849890
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2016


  • Action mechanisms
  • Euphorbiaceae
  • Phorbol esters
  • Seed oil


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