Transmission Parameters for Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus by Asian Citrus Psyllid (Hemiptera: Psyllidae)

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The purpose of this investigation was to evaluate acquisition and inoculation (together, transmission) efficiency of Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus (Las), the pathogen associated with citrus huanglongbing (HLB) by the Asian citrus psyllid, Diaphorina citri (Kuwayama) (Hemiptera: Psyllidae). In laboratory studies, nymphs reared on Las infected plants were more likely to acquire the bacterium than adults. Acquisition by nymphs ranged from 60 to 100%, whereas acquisition by adults only reached 40% after 5 wk of feeding on Las-infected plants. Similar rates of pathogen acquisition by psyllids after nymphal and adult feeding were observed in the field. Transmission of Las from parent to offspring (transovarial) occurred at a rate of 2‐6%. One year after psyllid inoculations, successful transmission by individual D. citri ranged from 4 to 10%, whereas groups of 100 or more D. citri transmitted the pathogen at a rate of ≈88%. In addition, the proportion of Las-positive adult psyllids, determined using quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction, decreased over time when held on healthy plants. Due to the low rate of pathogen acquisition and long time period required for successful inoculation by adult D. citri, experiments designed to determine the latent period required for replication and successful inoculation of Las by D. citri did not result in Las-infected plants after >1 yr of incubation after inoculation. Collectively, these results indicate that adult D. citri which acquire the HLB pathogen as adults are poor vectors of the pathogen compared with adults that acquired the pathogen as nymphs.

Keywords: acquisition; citrus greening disease; huanglongbing; inoculation; vector

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: October 1, 2010

More about this publication?
  • Journal of Economic Entomology is published bimonthly in February, April, June, August, October, and December. The journal publishes articles on the economic significance of insects and is divided into the following sections: apiculture & social insects; arthropods in relation to plant disease; forum; insecticide resistance and resistance management; ecotoxicology; biological and microbial control; ecology and behavior; sampling and biostatistics; household and structural insects; medical entomology; molecular entomology; veterinary entomology; forest entomology; horticultural entomology; field and forage crops, and small grains; stored-product; commodity treatment and quarantine entomology; and plant resistance. In addition to research papers, Journal of Economic Entomology publishes Letters to the Editor, interpretive articles in a Forum section, Short Communications, Rapid Communications, and Book Reviews.
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