Microbial evolution has turned a mild-mannered North American beetle into a tree killer in Asia. The red turpentine beetle, Dendroctonus valens, is a wood-boring species native to North America. D. valens is unremarkable and harmless in its native region. However once it migrated to China, it wiped out more than seven million pines in the past 12 years, and it’s poised to spread throughout much of Asia and Europe.
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