Journal of Chemical Ecology

, Volume 38, Issue 6, pp 795–801 | Cite as

Novel Bioassay Demonstrates Attraction of the White Potato Cyst Nematode Globodera Pallida (Stone) to Non-volatile and Volatile Host Plant Cues

  • Kevin FarnierEmail author
  • Marie Bengtsson
  • Paul G. Becher
  • Johanna Witzell
  • Peter Witzgall
  • Sanja Manduríc


Potato cyst nematodes (PCNs) are a major pest of solanaceous crops such as potatoes, tomatoes, and eggplants and have been widely studied over the last 30 years, with the majority of earlier studies focusing on the identification of natural hatching factors. As a novel approach, we focused instead on chemicals involved in nematode orientation towards its host plant. A new dual choice sand bioassay was designed to study nematode responses to potato root exudates (PRE). This bioassay, conducted together with a traditional hatching bioassay, showed that biologically active compounds that induce both hatching and attraction of PCNs can be collected by water extraction of incised potato roots. Furthermore, our results demonstrated that PCN also were attracted by potato root volatiles. Further work is needed to fully understand how PCNs use host plant chemical cues to orientate towards hosts. Nevertheless, the simple attraction assay used in this study provides an important tool for the identification of host-emitted attractants.


Chemical attraction Bioassay Plant-parasitic nematode Plant-nematode interaction Root volatiles Root exudate 



KF acknowledges FORMAS for their financial support, Susanne Andersson, Marie-Louise Måtegen, Maimoun Hassoun, and Stig Andersson for guidance concerning rearing of PCN, K. Devrajan for help in the conductance of some of these experiments, Joakim Ekelöv for advice on growing potatoes, and Saveer Ahmed for numerous suggestions and constant support. Finally, we thank Martin Steinbauer for encouragement to publish this research and enhancement of the English expression.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kevin Farnier
    • 1
    • 4
    Email author
  • Marie Bengtsson
    • 1
  • Paul G. Becher
    • 1
  • Johanna Witzell
    • 2
  • Peter Witzgall
    • 1
  • Sanja Manduríc
    • 1
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Plant Protection BiologySwedish University of Agricultural SciencesAlnarpSweden
  2. 2.Southern Swedish Forest Research CentreSwedish University of Agricultural SciencesAlnarpSweden
  3. 3.Jordbruksverket, VäxtskyddscentralenAlnarpSweden
  4. 4.Department of ZoologyLa Trobe UniversityMelbourneAustralia

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