SCHAUMBURG, ILL. – Central Life Sciences recently announced that Clive Henrick, Ph.D. received the 2010 Kenneth A. Spencer Award from the Kansas City Section of the American Chemical Society for his pioneering work on methoprene and other related insect growth regulator (IGR) insecticides including hydroprene and kinoprene. These compounds, which work through a unique “biorational” mode of action that makes them highly effective with a wide margin of safety, are widely used to control mosquitoes, fleas, cockroaches, bed bugs, and greenhouse pests.
Methoprene, marketed as Precor®, is widely used to prevent fleas from reproducing into infestations that can cause health problems for pets. Marketed as Altosid®, methoprene also stops mosquito emergence from standing water and reduces the chance of the spread of diseases like West Nile virus and EEE. Hydroprene (Gentrol®) targets insect pests that invade homes and businesses such as cockroaches and bed bugs. Kinoprene (Enstar II®) manages greenhouse pests such as gnats and midges.
“It is a tremendous honor to be selected for this award,” said Dr. Henrick. “I consider the Spencer award to be the most prestigious in our industry in the United States. The past recipients are all established leaders in their fields, and I am very pleased to be recognized among them. It is especially pleasing to be honored for my work on methoprene and related IGRs, a professional passion of mine for the last 40 years.”
Methoprene and related compounds hydropene and kinoprene exert their insecticide activity by mimicking insect growth hormones and thus acting as insect growth regulators specific only to insects. These compounds represent the first “juvenile hormone mimics” that are commercially useful because of their excellent effectiveness and wide margin of safety. The compounds work by disrupting the development, reproduction, and overall functioning of insect pests. In terms of toxicity, concentrations required to demonstrate any adverse effects on mammals are hundreds to thousands times higher than other insecticides. As a result, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) granted these IGRs the status of biopesticides, a status rarely achieved for synthetic products. Additionally, methoprene has been granted an “exemption from tolerance” (no maximum residue limits in treated products including meat, milk and grains) by EPA because of its safety profile and lack of adverse events.
“We are extremely happy for Dr. Henrick and applaud the Kansas City Chapter of the American Chemical Society for selecting him for the prestigious Spencer award,” said George Lindahl, executive vice-president of development at Central Life Sciences. Dr. Henrick’s work on IGRs has proven to be one of the most important advances in pesticides in the last 40 years providing us with extremely effective ways to control mosquitoes and other insect pests and include a wide margin of safety.”