Inoculation of Pine Trees with Avirulent Pinewood Nematode Under Experimental Conditions: Risk-Benefit Analysis

  • Hajime Kosaka


Virulence of the pinewood nematode, Bursaphelenchus xylophilus, varies widely from highly virulent to avirulent, or less pathogenic. The inoculation of pine trees with avirulent B. xylophilus induces resistance to subsequently inoculated virulent B. xylophilus. This induced resistance may constitute a biological control strategy for pine wilt disease. The characteristics of induced resistance have been previously identified in short-term experiments. In this study, the long-term and yearly repeated experiments were conducted to further understand the nature of induced resistance and the potential for control measures. Induced resistance of pine trees by avirulent B. xylophilus was re-confirmed, although the effects were not as strong as trunk injection with nematicides. The avirulent B. xylophilus remained avirulent in the long term, but occasionally caused tree mortality. The results show that the benefit, i.e., the chance of tree survival, outweighed the risk of tree mortality by avirulent B. xylophilus when pine trees were subsequently inoculated with virulent B. xylophilus. Explorative use of this resistance-inducing method will be possible in areas where pine wilt disease occurs naturally. More study is necessary to determine the effect of induced resistance against natural infection with B. xylophilus from vector insects.


Virulent Isolate Tree Mortality Botrytis Cinerea Pine Wilt Disease Pine Wood Nematode 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Fukuda, K. and Suzuki, K. (1993). [Induced resistance in the pine wilt disease.] In Elucidations of pathogenicity and induced resistance of pine wilt disease (ed. K. Suzuki), pp. 71–76. Ministry of Education, Culture and Science, Japan.Google Scholar
  2. Kishi, Y. (1995) The pine wood nematode and the Japanese pine sawyer. Tokyo, Japan, Thomas Company, 302 pp.Google Scholar
  3. Kiyohara, T. (1984). Pine wilt resistance induced by prior inoculation with avirulent isolate of Bursaphelenchus xylophilus. In Proceedings of the United States-Japan Seminar. The Resistance Mechanisms of Pines against Pine Wilt Disease (ed. V. Dropkin), pp. 178–186. Honolulu, Hawaii.Google Scholar
  4. Kiyohara, T. (1989). Etiological study of pine wilt disease. Bulletin of Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute 353:127–176.Google Scholar
  5. Kiyohara, T. and Bolla, R.I. (1990). Pathogenic variability among populations of the pinewood nematode, Bursaphelenchus xylophilus. Forest Science 36:1061–1076.Google Scholar
  6. Kiyohara, T., Kosaka, H., Aikawa, T., Ogura, N and Tabata, K. (1999). Experiments of induced resistance to pine wilt disease in pine forest. In Sustainability of Pine Forests in Relation to Pine Wilt and Decline. Proceedings of an International Symposium, Tokyo, Japan, 26–30 October 1998 (eds. K. Futai, K. Togashi and T. Ikeda), pp. 103–104. Shokado Shoten, Kyoto, Japan.Google Scholar
  7. Kiyohara, T. and Tokushige, Y. (1971). Inoculation experiments of a nematode, Bursaphelenchus sp., onto pine trees. Journal of Japanese Forestry Society 53:210–218.Google Scholar
  8. Kosaka, H., Aikawa, T., Ogura, N., Tabata, K. and Kiyohara, T. (2001a). Pine wilt disease caused by the pine wood nematode: the induced resistance of pine trees by the avirulent isolates of nematode. European Journal of Plant Pathology 107:667–675.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Kosaka, H., Aikawa, T., Ogura, N., Tabata, K. and Kiyohara, T. (2001b). Induced resistance of pine trees against pine wilt disease by avirulent nematode inoculation. IUFRO World Series Vol. 11. Protection of world forests from insect pest: Advances in research: 181–184.Google Scholar
  10. Mamiya, Y. and Enda, N. (1972) Transmission of Bursaphelenchus lignicolus (Nematoda: Aphelenchoididae) by Monochamus alternatus (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae). Nematologica 18:159–162.Google Scholar
  11. Mamiya, Y. and Enda, N. (1979) Bursaphelenchus mucronatus n. sp. (Nematoda: Aphelenchoididae) from pine wood and its biology and pathogenicity to pine trees. Nematologica 25:353–361.Google Scholar
  12. Mori, Y., Miyahara, F., Tsutsumi, Y. and Kondo, R. (2007). Experimental verification of induced resistance after pre-inoculation with avirulent pine wood nematode isolated with consideration of genetic factors in Japanese Black Pine. The Journal of Japanese Forest Society 89: 401–406.Google Scholar
  13. Sakai, Y., Kosaka, H. and Akiba, M. (2007). Induced resistance of the Ryukyu pine, Pinus luchuensis to pine wilt disease by pre-inoculation with the avirulent pinewood nematode, Bursaphelenchus xylophilus. The Journal of Japanese Forest Society 89:102–106.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Nakamura, K. and Yoshida, N. (2004). Successful control of pine wilt disease in Fukiage-hama seacoast pine forest in southwestern Japan. In The pine wood nematode, Bursaphelenchus xylophilus. Nematology Monographs and Perspectives, vol. 1 (eds. M. Mota and P. Vieira), pp. 247–260. E. J. Brill, Leiden, The Netherlands.Google Scholar
  15. Yoshida, N. (2006) A strategy for controlling pine wilt disease and its application on- site. The Journal of Japanese Forest Society 88: 422–428.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hajime Kosaka
    • 1
  1. 1.Hokkaido Research CenterForestry and Forest Products Research InstituteSapporo 062-8516Japan

Personalised recommendations