Venom of ectoparasitoid, Euplectrus sp near plathypenae (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae) regulates the physiological state of Pseudaletia separata (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) host as a food resource

J Insect Physiol. 2003 Feb;49(2):149-59. doi: 10.1016/s0022-1910(02)00261-5.


Euplectrus sp. near plathypenae is an ectoparasitoid that can parasitize from 3rd to day 0-6th instar Pseudaletia separata. The developmental period of the parasitoid from the egg to the pupal stage is about 13 days. Parasitized hosts are developmentally arrested and never molt to the next stadium. The injection of venom fluid results in similar effects on P. separata larvae as does parasitization. The inhibitory effect of the venom on molting was dose dependent. Injection of 0.3 female equivalents of venom into day 0-5th host instar resulted in a similar developmental arrest as seen in parasitized hosts. The amount of total lipid in the hemolymph of the host increased as a function of the amount of venom injected, while the lipid content of the fat body was similar to lipid levels in the fat body of parasitized larvae. The amount of total protein in the hemolymph also increased when venom was injected, whereas the protein level of the fat body did not increase. The lipid concentration within the parasitoid larva was maintained at the same level throughout larval development, but increased before pupation. We conclude that the injected venom increased the hemolymph content of lipid and protein to support the growth and development of the ectoparasitoid larva.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Electrophoresis, Polyacrylamide Gel
  • Feeding Behavior / physiology*
  • Hymenoptera / physiology*
  • Lepidoptera / physiology*
  • Venoms / pharmacology*


  • Venoms