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Effects of the wet catching method on the detection of Bursaphelenchus xylophilus from trapped longhorn beetle vectors

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The pine wood nematode (PWN), Bursaphelenchus xylophilus, causes pine wilt disease and is transmitted by Monochamus beetles. An efficient trapping system for these organisms is essential for their early detection in threatened regions. A wet catching method, using monoethylene glycol (MEG) in a collecting cup to preserve captured insects, was suitable for catching longhorn beetles. As a second step in developing this technique, we studied the influence of MEG on nematode detection. When M. galloprovincialis carrying PWN were submerged in MEG, nematodes died within 24 h. The preservative altered certain morphological features of nematodes immersed in solutions of 10, 30 or 60% MEG, impeding their morphological identification. However, molecular identification was possible as long as the MEG concentration was below 70%. At higher concentrations, a rinsing step with water before DNA extraction was enough to allow molecular detection. Wet trapping requires less frequent monitoring than dry trapping, thus reducing maintenance and related costs.

Affiliations: 1: 1Flanders Research Institute for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (ILVO), Plant Health Unit, Burgemeester Van Gansberghelaan 96, B-9820 Merelbeke, Belgium ; 2: 2National Institute for Agriculture and Veterinary Research, Department of Forest Pathology, Avenida da República, Quinta do Marquês, 2780-159 Oeiras, Portugal ; 3: 3Université Libre de Bruxelles, Lutte Biologiques et Ecologie Spatiale – CP160/12, 50 Avenue F.D. Roosevelt, B-1050 Brussels, Belgium ; 4: 4Ghent University, Department of Biology, K.L. Ledeganckstraat 35, B-9000 Ghent, Belgium

*Corresponding author, e-mail:

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