Effect of Copper Sulfate and Lead Acetate on Infection of Pines with Bursaphelenchus xylophilus


  • M. C. Huber
  • R. E. K. Winter
  • R. I. Bolla


Treatment of 3-year-old Scots, white, and Austrian pine seedlings with copper sulfate or lead acetate significantly affected energy homeostasis and oleoresin production in the seedlings but did not induce wilting of the seedlings. Inoculation of copper sulfate-treated or lead acetate-treated white, Scots, and Austrian pine seedlings with the white pine specific pathotype of Bursaphelenchus xylophilus, VPSt-1, caused a significant increase in oleoresin production, stressed energy homeostasis, and induced rapid wilting of the seedlings. Scots pine lost tolerance and Austrian pine lost resistance to VPSt-1 after the seedlings were treated with either copper sulfate or lead acetate. These results suggest that environmental pollution may significantly affect susceptibility of pines to B. xylophilus and may have a role in establishment of this nematode in uninfested areas. Key words: Bursaphelenchus xylophilus, copper, heavy metal, lead, pinewood nematode, pine wilt, Pinus nigra, P. strobus, P. sylvestris, resistance, susceptibility.