Galling impacts of the gall wasp Leptocybe invasa (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae) on Eucalyptus trees vary with plant genotype

  • Yao Xiang
  • Wenfeng Guo
  • Si Shen
  • Xu Gao
  • Xiaoqiong LiEmail author
Original Research Article


Impacts of galling on the distributions of plant metabolites can vary greatly with plant genotype. In this study, two Eucalyptus genotypes with different resistance levels were chosen, and the levels of several primary and secondary metabolites, as well as phytohormones in galls and ungalled portions of galled leaves infested by the gall wasp Leptocybe invasa, and gall-free (control) leaves were compared. It was found that galls of both two plant genotypes accumulated higher concentrations of carbon, total phenolics, gibberellins (GA), and abscisic acid (ABA) but had lower chlorophyll content than ungalled portions. However, galls of highly susceptible genotype contained higher nitrogen (N), cytokinins (CK), GA, and chlorophyll content but lower C/N ratio, total phenolics, tannins, and ABA than less susceptible genotype. For both two genotypes, ABA in galls and ungalled portions increased compared with adjacent control leaves. CK and GA levels increased in galls but decreased in ungalled portions of highly susceptible genotype, compared with control leaves. For less susceptible genotype, CK levels increased in both galls and ungalled portions compared with control leaves, but higher levels of tannins, total phenolics, and GA were only detected in galls. Therefore, our study found insufficient evidence that the impact of galling on the distributions of these metabolites and phytohormones extended beyond the attacked leaves, because they varied greatly with plant genotype.


Chlorophyll content Gall-inducing insect Nitrogen Nutrient sink Phenolic compound Phytohormone 



We gratefully acknowledge Baoming Wang from the Chinese Agriculture University for his assistance with phytohormone analysis. We would like to thank the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region Forestry Research Institution for providing the seedlings of Eucalyptus trees. We also appreciate Professor Roy van Driesche for the language edits.

Funding information

This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation (31800423, 31660087) and the Natural Science Foundation of Guangxi Province (2018GXNSFBA281172).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© African Association of Insect Scientists 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yao Xiang
    • 1
  • Wenfeng Guo
    • 2
  • Si Shen
    • 1
  • Xu Gao
    • 1
  • Xiaoqiong Li
    • 1
    • 3
    Email author
  1. 1.Guangxi Key Laboratory of Forest Ecology and Conservation, College of ForestryGuangxi UniversityNanningChina
  2. 2.Guangxi Crop Genetic Improvement and Biotechnology LaboratoryGuangxi Academy of Agricultural SciencesNanningChina
  3. 3.Guangxi Youyiguan Forest Ecosystem Research StationPingxiangChina

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