The potato cyst nematodes (PCNs) Globodera pallida and Globodera rostochiensis are important parasites of potato. PCNs undergo complex biotrophic interactions with their hosts that involve gene expression changes in both the nematode and the host plant. The aim of this study was to determine key genes that are differentially expressed in Globodera pallida life cycle stages and during the initiation of the feeding site in susceptible and partially resistant potato genotypes. For this purpose, two microarray experiments were designed: (i) a comparison of eggs, infective second-stage juveniles (J2s) and sedentary parasitic-stage J2s (SJ2); (ii) a comparison of SJ2s at 8?days after inoculation (DAI) in the susceptible cultivar (Desiree) and two partially resistant lines. The results showed differential expression of G.?pallida genes during the stages studied, including previously characterized effectors. In addition, a large number of genes changed their expression between SJ2s in the susceptible cultivar and those infecting partially resistant lines; the number of genes with modified expression was lower when the two partially resistant lines were compared. Moreover, a histopathological study was performed at several time points (7, 14 and 30?DAI) and showed the similarities between both partially resistant lines with a delay and degeneration in the formation of the syncytia in comparison with the susceptible cultivar. Females at 30?DAI in partially resistant lines showed a delay in their development in comparison with those in the susceptible cultivar.