Fine-scale geographical origin of an insect pest invading North America

Takahiro Hosokawa, Naruo Nikoh, Takema Fukatsu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)


Invasive species may rapidly spread throughout new areas once introduced, which may potentially lead to serious damage to local fauna and flora. Information on geographical origins, introduction routes, and biology in native regions of such invasive species is of critical importance in identifying means of transport, preventing reintroduction, and establishing control/eradication methods. The plataspid stinkbug Megacopta cribraria, known as kudzu bug, recently invaded North America and now has become not only an agricultural pest of soybean but also a nuisance pest. Here we investigate the geographical origin of the invasive M. cribraria populations. Phylogeographical analyses based on 8.7 kb mitochondrial DNA sequences of the introduced and East Asian native Megacopta populations identified a well-supported clade consisting of the introduced populations and M. punctatissima populations in the Kyushu region of Japan, which strongly suggests that the invading M. cribraria populations are derived from a M. punctatissima population in the Kyushu region. Therefore, the region is proposed as a promising source of natural enemies for biological control of the invasive pest. Based on the phylogenetic information, relationship and treatment of the two Megacopta species are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere89107
JournalPloS one
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 13 2014
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences
  • General


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