Sean D. Schoville, University of Wisconsin-MadisonFollow
Yolanda H. Chen, University of Vermont
Martin N. Andersson, Lund University, Sweden
Joshua B. Benoit, University of Cincinnati
Anita Bhandari, Christian-Albrechts-University at Kiel, Germany
Julia H. Bowsher, North Dakota State University
Kristian Brevik, University of Vermont
Kaat Cappelle, Ghent University, Belgium
Mei-Ju M. Chen, US Department of Agriculture
Anna K. Childers, US Department of Agriculture
Christopher Childers, US Department of Agriculture
Olivier Christiaens, Ghent University, Belgium
Justin Clements, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Elise M. Didion, University of Cincinnati
Elena N. Elpidina, Lomonosov Moscow State University, Russia
Patamarerk Engsontia, Prince of Songkla University, Thailand
Markus Friedrich, Wayne State University
Inmaculada García-Robles, University of Valencia, Spain
Richard A. Gibbs, Baylor College of Medicine
Chandan Goswami, National Institute of Science Education and Research, India
Alessandro Grapputo, University of Padova, Italy
Kristina Gruden, National Institute of Biology, Slovenia
Marcin Grynberg, Polish Academy of Sciences, Poland
Bernard Henrissat, Aix-Marseille Université, France
Emily C. Jennings, University of Cincinnati
Jeffery W. Jones, Wayne State University
Megha Kalsi, University of KentuckyFollow
Sher A. Khan, Texas A&M University
Abhishek Kumar, Christian-Albrechts-University at Kiel, Germany
Fei Li, Nanjing Agricultural University, China
Vincent Lombard, Aix-Marseille Université, France
Subba Reddy Palli, University of KentuckyFollow
June-Sun Yoon, University of KentuckyFollow


The Colorado potato beetle is one of the most challenging agricultural pests to manage. It has shown a spectacular ability to adapt to a variety of solanaceaeous plants and variable climates during its global invasion, and, notably, to rapidly evolve insecticide resistance. To examine evidence of rapid evolutionary change, and to understand the genetic basis of herbivory and insecticide resistance, we tested for structural and functional genomic changes relative to other arthropod species using genome sequencing, transcriptomics, and community annotation. Two factors that might facilitate rapid evolutionary change include transposable elements, which comprise at least 17% of the genome and are rapidly evolving compared to other Coleoptera, and high levels of nucleotide diversity in rapidly growing pest populations. Adaptations to plant feeding are evident in gene expansions and differential expression of digestive enzymes in gut tissues, as well as expansions of gustatory receptors for bitter tasting. Surprisingly, the suite of genes involved in insecticide resistance is similar to other beetles. Finally, duplications in the RNAi pathway might explain why Leptinotarsa decemlineata has high sensitivity to dsRNA. The L. decemlineata genome provides opportunities to investigate a broad range of phenotypes and to develop sustainable methods to control this widely successful pest.

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Notes/Citation Information

Published in Scientific Reports, v. 8, 1931, p. 1-18.

© The Author(s) 2018

This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit

Due to the large number of authors, only the first 30 and the authors affiliated with the University of Kentucky are listed in the author section above. For the complete list of authors, please download this article or visit:

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Funding Information

We would like to acknowledge the following funding sources: sequencing, assembly and automated annotation was supported by NIH grant NHGRI U54 HG003273 to RAG; the UVM Agricultural Experiment Station Hatch grant to YHC (VT-H02010); the NIH postdoctoral training grant to RFM (K12 GM000708); MMT’s work with Apollo was supported by NIH grants (5R01GM080203 from NIGMS, and 5R01HG004483 from NHGRI) and by the Director, Office of Science, Office of Basic Energy Sciences, of the U.S. Department of Energy (contract No. DE-AC02-05CH11231); the National Science Centre (2012/07/D/NZ2/04286) and Ministry of Science and Higher Education scholarship to AM.

Related Content

Supplementary information accompanies this paper at

All data generated or analyzed during this study have been made publicly available (see Methods for NCBI accession numbers), or included in this published article and its supplementary information. The genome assembly and official gene sets can be accessed at: https://data., dataset/leptinotarsa-decemlineata-genome-annotations-v053_5668 and leptinotarsa-decemlineata-ofcial-gene-set-v11.

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