Organophosphorus Pesticide

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Organophosphorus Pesticide


any one of numerous pesticides that are organic derivatives of the acids phosphorus. Organophosphorus pesticides are used to combat crop pests, plant diseases, ectoparasites of domestic animals (body parasites), weeds, and synanthropic insects, mites, and ticks. They are also used as bactericides and plant growth regulators.

Organophosphorus pesticides have low stability in the environment, which prevents their accumulation in amounts dangerous for living organisms. Most decompose after application, with the formation of nontoxic products such as phosphoric acid, carbon dioxide, and water. Their disadvantages include the relatively high toxicity of many such pesticides for humans and animals, which necessitates the observation of safety precautions during application.

The annual world production of organophosphorus pesticides in 1975 exceeded 200,000 tons. There are more than 150 different organophosphorus pesticides, which are used as insecticides (karbofos, metafos, khlorofos), acaricides (metilnitrofos, octa-methyl pyrophosphoramide), fungicides (pirazofos, khinozan, inezin), herbicides (Falone, bensulid), and growth regulators (etefon andfosfon-D).


Mel’nikov, N. N. Khimiia i tekhnologiiapestitsidov. Moscow, 1974.
Sistemnye fungitsidy. Moscow, 1975. (Translated from English.)
Fest, C, and K. J. Schmidt. The Chemistry of Organophosphorus Pesticides. Berlin, 1973.
Eto, M. Organophosphorus Pesticides: Organic and Biological Chemistry. Cleveland, Ohio, 1974.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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