Original Paper

Biological Invasions

, Volume 12, Issue 5, pp 1165-1182

First online:

Genetic analyses of the Asian longhorned beetle (Coleoptera, Cerambycidae, Anoplophora glabripennis), in North America, Europe and Asia

  • Maureen CarterAffiliated withDepartment of Entomology, Cornell University Email author 
  • , Michael SmithAffiliated withBeneficial Insect Introduction Research Unit, USDA-ARS
  • , Richard HarrisonAffiliated withEcology and Evolutionary Biology, Cornell University

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The Asian longhorned beetle, (Coleoptera, Cerambycidae, Anoplophora glabripennis (Motschulsky)), is endemic to China and Korea and an important invasive insect in North America and Europe. We analyzed mitochondrial DNA sequence data of invasive populations of A. glabripennis in North America and Europe, and microsatellite allele frequency data of beetles from North America. We show that populations in New York City and Long Island NY; New Jersey, Chicago, IL, and Toronto, Canada have limited genetic diversity compared to populations in China. In addition, the data suggest that separate introduction events were responsible for many of the populations in North America and for European populations in Austria, France, Germany and Italy. Populations on Long Island, NY are suspected to have been initiated by the transport of cut wood from New York City. A. glabripennis beetles found in Jersey City, NJ appear to be derived from an expansion of the New York City, NY population, whereas beetles found in Linden, NJ are an expansion from the Carteret, NJ population. Limited genetic diversity did not stop this invasive insect from establishing damaging populations in North America. Founders of introduced A. glabripennis populations in North America and Europe are likely derived from populations in China that are themselves invasive, rendering difficult the identification of source populations. Invasiveness in an insect’s natural range could be an important predictor of potential pest status of introduced populations.


Anoplophora glabripennis Asian longhorned beetle Invasive species Mitochondrial DNA Microsatellite loci