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effective protection

NootkaShield™ nootkatone: Exploring a new approach for protection against insects

What is NootkaShield™ nootkatone?

Do you remember your grandmother’s cedar chest where she stored delicate items and woolen clothes to protect them from moths and other insects? Plants produce natural compounds to protect themselves from insects and disease. Nootkatone is one of these protective compounds from nature, found in the bark of Alaskan Yellow Cedar trees (Cupressus nootkatensis1) and in grapefruit skin. Nootkatone can be extracted from these natural resources and has a fresh scent.

The US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has demonstrated that nootkatone is a highly effective agent against the ticks that transmit Lyme disease and a variety of other insects including nuisance pests2

Obtaining nootkatone from nature is cost prohibitive and not sustainable. However, Evolva is now capable of producing NootkaShield™ nootkatone, a 98% pure nature-identical nootkatone via a more sustainable route when compared to extraction from natural sources. NootkaShield™ production combines Evolva’s innovative yeast fermentation process with a proprietary conversion technique. CDC research has determined that nootkatone is effective at repelling and controlling a range of insect pests including ticks, mosquitoes, and other nuisance insects2.

1. Also known as Callitropsis nootkatensis.
2. Panella NA, Dolan MC, Karchesy JJ, Xiong Y, Peralta-Cruz J, Khasawneh M, Montenieri JA, Maupin GO, Use of novel compounds for pest control: insecticidal and acaricidal activity of essential oil components from heartwood of Alaska yellow cedar. J Med Entomol. 2005 May;42(3):352-8

U.S. EPA Manufacturing Use Registration is Under Review

Evolva has a registration application before the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for the approval of NootkaShield™ for manufacturing use. Any product that will contain NootkaShield™ as an active ingredient must submit a product application to the EPA and be approved prior to initiating sales. Similar governing bodies in other countries must review data demonstrating NootkaShield™ is safe and effective.


Evolva studies show NootkaShield™ nootkatone is effective at repelling and controlling a wide spectrum of biting insects, including mosquitoes and ticks.1

Biting Midge
Biting Midge
House Fly
House Fly
Moth Fly
Drain Fly
Fire Ant
Fire Ant
Bed Bug
Bed Bug
Body Lice
Body Louse
Dust Mites
Dust Mites

Table 1: Overview of Evolva research

Kill Repel
Diptera Mosquito
Biting midge
Drain fly
House fly
Siphonaptera Cat flea*
Hymenoptera Fire ant
Hemiptera Aphid
White fly*
Phthiraptera Body louse
Blattodea Termite
Acarina Dust mite
Ixodida Tick
* images not shown

CDC Confirms Efficacy of Nootkatone In Field Trial.3
Field trials on repellency vs. I. scapularis and Amblyomma americanum (Lone Star tick) were performed with coveralls treated with nootkatone, carvacrol, EcoSMART and Permanone. After day seven of the first treatment of the coveralls, results indicate that nootkatone is the most effective treatment against exposure to both species of ticks.

Table 2: Relative resistance to A. gambiae resistant mutants

Resistant Form* Pesticide Tested Resistance Increase to Pesticide Resistance Increase to Nootkatone
Pyrethroid Resistant Permethrin 16 x 1.1 x
Dieldrin Resistant Dieldrin 1,318 x 1.5 x
Carbamate Resistant Proxopur 5,046 x 1.7 x

* Tested on mosquitos that are resistant to pyrethroids, dieldrin and carbamates.

NootkaShield™ can be an effective alternative to mosquito populations with resistance to conventional pesticides.2
NootkaShield™ can be an effective alternative to mosquito populations with resistance to conventional pesticides.2

NootkaShield™ nootkatone has a different mechanism of action against mosquitoes compared to current commercial adulticides. Furthermore, Anopheles gambiae mosquitoes that are resistant to pyrethroids, dieldrin and carbamates do not show increased resistance to nootkatone. Resistance ratio studies indicate that Anopheles gambiae to NootkaShield™ nootkatone is close to one2

1. Evolva proprietary research, results available upon request.
2. McAllister JC, Adams MF, Mode of action for natural products isolated from essential oils of two trees is different from available mosquito adulticides. Division of Vector-Borne Infections Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. J Med Entomol. 2010 Nov;47(6):1123-6.
3. Jordan RA, Schulze TL, Dolan MC, Efficacy of plant-derived and synthetic compounds on clothing as repellents against Ixodes scapularis and Amblyomma americanum (Acari: Ixodidae). J Med Entomol. 2012 Jan;49(1):101-6.

Table 3: Coverall repellency trials


Nootkatone is approved as a flavor and fragrance1 in the USA, EU and Worldwide and has not been classified as a carcinogen by NTP, IARC, or OSHA2; non-genotoxic (EFSA).

1. Flavor: USA (21 CFR 172.515); FEMA-GRAS 3166; Europe (Council of Europe number: 11164); Worldwide (JECFA, No 1398); Fragrance: IFRA
2. EFSA CEF Panel (EFSA Panel on Food Contact Materials, Enzymes, Flavourings and Processing Aids), 2015. Scientific Opinion on Flavouring Group Evaluation 213, Revision 2 (FGE.213Rev2): Consideration of genotoxic potential for α,β-unsaturated alicyclic ketones and precursors from chemical subgroup 2.7 of FGE.19. EFSA Journal 2015;13(9):4244, 49 pp. doi:10.2903/j.efsa.2015.4244.
Toxic Substances) guidelines
4. IFM (Research Institute for fragrance materials) database

Extensive Safety Data
LD50 Oral (rat) > 5,000 mg/kg
LD50 Dermal (rabbit) > 5,000 mg/kg
LC50 Inhalation (rat) > 2.2 mg/L
NOAEL (oral, rat) > 100 mg/kg in a 28-day study should be NOAEL (oral, rat): 100 mg/kg/day in a 90-day study.
Primary eye irritation, in male rabbits: practically non-irritating
Dermal sensitization, mouse local lymph node assay: not a sensitizer at concentrations up to 50%
Primary dermal irritation, in male rabbits: slightly irritating
No sensitization observed in humans with high purity (>98%) Nootkatone4

NootkaShield™ nootkatone from Evolva is a fresh alternative for the pest control industry

Consumers are increasingly looking for safe and familiar ingredients in the products that they purchase. Evolva is uniquely positioned to deliver high quality nootkatone, for the pest control industry at a commercial scale. At this time, samples of NootkaShield™ nootkatone are available for research, product development, testing and potential registration.

Manufacturers rely on consistent quality and purity, ingredient safety, and reliable sourcing. NootkaShield nootkatone is:

  • Produced at metric ton scale with aggressive expansion plans in place
  • Produced at high purity (>98%)
  • Consistent from batch to batch
  • Backed by a strong IP portfolio and access to CDC patents
  • Supported by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Under review by the US EPA for registration as an approved biopesticide

Evolva is committed to delivering the highest quality, premium NootkaShield™ nootkatone.

  • Evolva invests heavily in understanding the science of nootkatone, its applications and increasing adoption to improve the health and wellness of individuals and animals
  • Evolva is the recipient of a CDC funded grant to develop NootkaShield based end-user products against select mosquito-borne diseases like Zika. This award has been funded in whole with Federal funds from the Center of Disease Control and Prevention, and managed by the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR), Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), under Contract No. HHSO100201700015C.
  • Our team of scientists are continuously innovating, researching and testing to provide optimal NootkaShield™-based formulations that deliver positive effective pest control

Market Segments

Evolva is actively pursuing commercial development with all major industries involved in the personal protection against biting insects and ticks, in order to deliver to consumers the benefit of NootkaShield™ nootkatone. All finished products containing NootkaShield™ nootkatone as an active ingredient require EPA approval.

For any request regarding the commercial aspects of NootkaShield™ please contact Giovanni Salerno.

Be one of the first to develop, formulate and partner with us.

Contact Our Specialists

Giovanni Salerno

Senior Vice President NootkaShield™ nootkatone