Nootkatone is a citrus ingredient that is characteristically associated with grapefruit that has the potential to become an effective repellent against a range of insect pests including ticks, bed bugs and mosquitoes.
For example, the US Centers for Disease Control has demonstrated that nootkatone is a highly effective agent against the ticks that transmit Lyme disease.
However, prior to initiating sales of insect control products that utilise nootkatone as an active ingredient, it will be necessary to obtain regulatory approval from the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and similar governing bodies in other countries.
In early 2015, Evolva submitted a request to the EPA to classify nootkatone as a biochemical pesticide active ingredient (a subcategory of biopesticide). This classification allows for a potentially expedited process for registration of nootkatone for use against pests.
Evolva received approval from the EPA for this classification in August 2015. From this point forward, it will take an estimated 2-3 years of regulatory work to get nootkatone approved as an insect and tick repellent in the USA. Evolva is also investigating other geographies.