Reproductive compatibility and genetic variation between two strains of Aphelinus albipodus (Hymenoptera: Aphelinidae), a parasitoid of the soybean aphid, Aphis glycines (Homoptera: Aphididae)

Zhishan Wu, Keith R. Hopper, Robert J. O'Neil, David J. Voegtlin, David R. Prokrym, George E. Heimpel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Aphelinus albipodus Hayat and Fatima is a potential biological control agent of the soybean aphid, Aphis glycines Matsumura, which is a newly introduced soybean pest in the United States. We compared the reproductive compatibility and molecular genetic variation between two geographic strains of A. albipodus. One strain was collected from soybean aphids in Japan and the other recovered from Russian wheat aphid, Diuraphis noxia (Mordvilko), in the western U.S., populations of which were established with parasitoids imported from Eurasia. We present results of crossing experiments between the two strains, genetic differences based on RAPD-PCR markers, rDNA ITS1 and ITS2 gene sequences, and presence of Wolbachia in the two strains using PCR amplification of the wsp gene. We found no reduction in the production of females in reciprocal crosses between strains, but a significant reduction in fecundity when F 1 females stemming from one of the reciprocal crosses were backcrossed to males from either source. The two strains differed by 3.4% in the rDNA ITS1 sequence and by presence/absence of one RAPD-PCR marker from a total of 20 RAPD primers screened, but their rDNA ITS2 sequences were identical. We used restriction enzyme analysis to separate the strains by differential digestion of the ITS1 PCR product. Wolbachia was present in 100% of males and females of both strains of A. albipodus.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)311-319
Number of pages9
JournalBiological Control
Issue number3
StatePublished - Nov 2004

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank Jeff Berg, Jeremy Kobany, and Kathryn Musig for insect rearing assistance, Paul J. Ode for helpful suggestions, Richard Stouthamer for sharing unpublished data, and two anonymous reviewers for suggestions on the manuscript. Sequencing was done by the Advanced Genetic Analysis Center at the University of Minnesota (St. Paul, MN, USA). This study was partly supported by a cooperative agreement from USDA-APHIS (No. 01-8100-0720-CA) to G.E.H., K.R.H., D.J.V., and R.J.O., and by the University of Minnesota Agricultural Experiment Station.

Copyright 2012 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Aphelinus albipodus
  • Aphid parasitoid
  • Aphis glycines
  • Biological control
  • Internal transcribed spacer
  • PCR
  • Reproductive compatibility
  • Wolbachia


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