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Journal Article

The pathogen causing Dutch elm disease makes host trees attract insect vectors

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McLeod, G., Gries, R., von Reuß, S. H., Rahe, J., McIntosh, R., König, W., et al. (2005). The pathogen causing Dutch elm disease makes host trees attract insect vectors. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 272(1580), 2499-2503. doi:10.1098/rspb.2005.3202.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-000F-C385-8
Dutch elm disease is caused by the fungal pathogen Ophiostoma novo-ulmi which is transmitted by the native elm bark beetle, Hylurgopinus rufipes. We have found that four semiochemicals (the monoterpene (-)- beta-pinene and the sesquiterpenes (-)-alpha-cubebene, (+)-spiroaxa-5,7-diene and (+)-delta-cadinene) from diseased American elms, Ulmus americana, synergistically attract H. rufipes, and that sesquiterpene emission is upregulated in elm trees inoculated with O. novo-ulmi. The fungus thus manipulates host trees to enhance their apparency to foraging beetles, a strategy that increases the probability of transportation the pathogen to new hosts.