Semiochemical: definition and operation

The SECURE range, developed by the researchers of the IRSEA (Institute of Research in Semiochemistry and Applied Ethology), partner of SIGNS, gives the breeder the possibility to establish a positive and reassuring communication with his animals. The products of the SECURE range allow to practice a breeding respectful of the quality of life of the animals, which supports an optimal growth of animals in good health thanks to perfectly operational immune defenses. The SECURE range is the tool that breeders who are concerned about eco-responsible breeding and who consider the animal as a respected partner have been waiting for.


What is a semiochemical?

A semiochemical is a secretion emitted by a living being and which has the value of a communication signal for its fellow creatures or for other species. There are instraspecific semiochemicals, which allow communication between individuals of the same species. This is what we call pheromones. There are different types of pheromones possible:

- Sexual pheromones
- Pheromones of territorial marking
- The pheromones of alert
- Soothing pheromones

At SIGNS we are particularly interested in this last pheromone, also called appeasines


Where does it come from?

Semiochemistry (from the Greek "semios" sign) studies chemical communication, the oldest and most widespread mode of information transmission among living things.

The idea behind semiotics for SIGNS is to interact with the living world using its codes, rather than trying to bend it to our demands. Our strategy is to understand the adaptive process that leads the animal to adopt a behavior that allows it to cope with the environment proposed by humans.

How does it work?

Semiochemicals can be perceived by smell for volatile compounds, or by taste for non-volatile compounds. In the case of appeasements, where the compounds are very volatile, the subject detects the semiochemical through his vomeronasal organ which will process the message to the brain. Otherwise called Jacobson's organ, the vomeronasal organ is present in all mammals: it is a tubular organ located in the nasal cavities, just above the bony palate and which is connected with a canal linking the oral cavity to the nasal cavity. In birds, this organ does not exist. Its function is provided by a portion of the olfactory mucosa.

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