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Detection of Rhopalosiphum insertum (apple-grass aphid) predation by the predatory mite Anystis baccarum using molecular gut analysis

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1 A simple, yet sensitive polymerase chain reaction based technique was developed for the detection of the apple-grass aphid Rhopalosiphum insertum in the gut of Anystis baccarum, a predatory mite.

2 A range of conserved polymerase chain reaction primers for insect mitochondrial and ribosomal DNA were tested in order to amplify R. insertum DNA. The mitochondrial DNA primers LrRNAR2 + N1F1, amplified a region between the ND1 and large subunit RNA genes.

3 DNA sequencing of the R. insertum ND1-LRNA polymerase chain reaction product allowed aphid-specific polymerase chain reaction primers to be designed. These amplified a 283-bp product from individual aphids. No polymerase chain reaction product was amplified from individual A. baccarum.

4 Using the aphid-specific primers against A. baccarum fed on R. insertum, the diagnostic 283-bp product was amplified.

5 Two restriction enzymes (RsaI and AluI) produced patterns that allowed unambiguous identification of R. insertum DNA from that of Macrosiphum euphorbiae and Myzus persicae.

Keywords: Anystis baccarum; PCR; Rhopalosiphum insertum; aphid; gut contents; predation

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Applied Plant Science Division, The Agriculture and Food Science Centre, Department of Agriculture and Rural Development and The Queen's University of Belfast, Newforge Lane, Belfast BT9 5PX, Northern Ireland, UK.

Publication date: August 1, 2003


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