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What is pyrethrins?

The pyrethrins are a class of organic compounds normally derived from Chrysanthemum cinerariifolium that have potent insecticidal activity by targeting the nervous systems of insects. Pyrethrin is synthetically made by industrial methods, but it also naturally occurs in chrysanthemum flowers, thus is often considered an organic insecticide, or at least when is not combined with piperonyl butoxide or other synthetic adjuvants. Their insecticidal and insect-repellent properties have been known and used for thousands of years.

Use as an insecticide
Pyrethrin is most commonly used as an insecticide and has been used for this purpose since the 1900s.In the 1800s, it was known as "Persian powder", "Persian pellitory", and "zacherlin". Pyrethrins delay the closure of voltage-gated sodium ion channels in the nerve cells of insects, resulting in repeated and extended nerve firings. This hyperexcitation causes the death of the insect due to loss of motor coordination and paralysis. Resistance to pyrethrin has been bypassed by pairing the insecticide with synthetic synergists such as piperonyl butoxide. Together, these two compounds prevent detoxification in the insect, ensuring insect death. Synergists make pyrethrin more effective, allowing lower doses to be effective. Pyrethrins are effective insecticides because they selectively target insects rather than mammals due to higher insect nerve sensitivity, smaller insect body size, lower mammalian skin absorption, and more efficient mammalian hepatic metabolism.
Although pyrethrin is a potent insecticide, it also functions as an insect repellent at lower concentrations. Observations in food establishments demonstrate that flies are not immediately killed, but are found more often on windowsills or near doorways. This suggests, due to the low dosage applied, that insects are driven to leave the area before dying. Because of their insecticide and insect repellent effect, pyrethrins have been very successful in reducing insect pest populations that affect humans, crops, livestock, and pets, such as ants, spiders, and lice, as well as potentially disease-carrying mosquitoes, fleas, and ticks.
As pyrethrins and pyrethroids are increasingly being used as insecticides, the number of illnesses and injuries associated with exposure to these chemicals is also increasing.However, few cases leading to serious health effects or mortality in humans have occurred, which is why pyrethroids are labeled “low-toxicity” chemicals and are ubiquitous in home-care products. Pyrethrins are widely regarded as better for the environment, and can be harmless if used only in the field with localized sprays, as UV exposure breaks them down into harmless compounds. Additionally, they have little lasting effect on plants, degrading naturally or being degraded by the cooking process.
Specific pest species that have been successfully controlled by pyrethrum include: potato, beet, grape, and six-spotted leafhopper, cabbage looper, celery leaf tier, Say’s stink bug, twelve-spotted cucumber beetle, lygus bugs on peaches, grape and flower thrips, and cranberry fruitworm.

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Xi'an Fengzu Biological Technology Co.,Ltd
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