Effects of endophytic fungi in Mongolian pine on the selection behavior of woodwasp (Sirex noctilio) and the growth of its fungal symbiont.
Background: The European woodwasp, Sirex noctilio, is a global invasive pest, attacking a wide variety of pine species by inoculating spores of a symbiotic fungus (Amylostereum areolatum) at oviposition. The woodwasp larvae depend on the growth of the symbiotic fungus to feed. The relationship among host endophytic fungi, symbiotic fungus and woodwasp remain elusive. Here, the effects of endophytes in Mongolian pine on the growth of Amylostereum areolatum and the selection behavior of female woodwasp were investigated by quantifying the mycelium growth rates and olfactometry assays. Results: The endophytic plant fungi, Trichoderma harzianum, Phlebiopsis gigantea, T. viride and T. atroviride, completely killed the mycelia of Amylostereum areolatum. Mycelium fermentation broth of Chaetomium globosum inhibited the growth of the symbiont. Moreover, we observed that volatiles of Ophiostoma minus and Aspergillus niger (acetophenone, acetylacetone, hexadecane, phenylethyl alcohol, and isopropyl myristate) had repellent effects on adult female woodwasp. While volatiles of Amylostereum areolatum ((-)-globulol, 2-hexene, cycloprop[e]indene-1a,2(1H)-dicarboxaldehyde, terpene and cyclopentanone) had a significant attractiveness to adult female woodwasp. Conclusions: Some species of the host endophytic fungi had a significant negative effect on the growth and development of woodwasps, which could be useful in the monitoring and effective management of woodwasps.