Samples of the aphid Aphis gossypii (Glover) were collected from different host plants at 18 locations in southern France, La Réunion, Portugal and Laos. RAPD (random amplified polymorphic DNA) patterns of the 480 aphids were obtained using three random primers. A large number of RAPD bands were shared by all aphids of the 18 populations, but some RAPD bands appeared to be population specific. Over all aphids, a total of 37 polymorphic bands were identified and defined 142 RAPD phenotypes. A cluster analysis based on genetic distance revealed that the 18 aphid populations were divided into two groups, depending on whether they were collected on a cucurbit host plant. An analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA) was also performed and confirmed the differentiation into two groups. Several RAPD bands that were obtained using random primer A11 could be considered as diagnostic loci as they were fixed in populations collected on cucurbits and were always absent in those collected on noncucurbit host plants. These results represent the first evidence for genetic structuring within the species A. gossypii, according to host-plant type.