GLASSY-WINGED SHARPSHOOTER AND PIERCE'S DISEASE
Location: Subtropical Insects and Horticulture Research
Project Number: 6618-22000-038-00
Start Date: May 21, 2010
End Date: Apr 20, 2011
Conduct research on aspects of vector biology and ecology of insects transmitting
Pierce's disease and the causative Xylella fastidiosa bacterium, including
approaches that utilize moecular tools that will facilitate development of
management tools to reduce movement and spread of the vectors and the disease.
Research will primarily focus on and have application to Pierce's disease on grapes grown in the Southeastern U.S., but will also be applicable to management of Pierce's disease in California. It is expected that the Ft. Pierce effort will
coordinate closely with the ARS effort in Parlier, California.
Pierce's Disease, PD, is one of several economically important bacterial diseases
caused by the pathogenic bacterium, Xylella fastidiosa, which is spread by the
glassy-winged sharpshooter, and other leafhoppers. Piece's Disease is a limiting
factor in the National grape production throughout the Southeastern U.S. and California. Xylella also causes other "Scorch" diseases in many other tree crops and ornamentals. One such example is citrus variegated chlorosis, CVC, which is devastating to citrus, but has not yet been reported within the borders of the U.S. If not contained, PD will severely impact both the domestic and international
viticultural markets. Therefore, we are studying aspects of vector biology,
genetics, pathology, and potential biological control agents. Other methods of plant protections are also being studied, which includes insecticides, novel chemistries, germplasm improvement using disease and insect resistance genes in grapes will also be incorporated to develop an effective IPM strategy to reduce the economic impacts of PD and its leafhoper vectors. Vector-pathogen interactions will be biologically characterized. Current and emerging agricultural problems associated with leafhopper vectors of Xylella and other plant diseases will be incorporated into the research program.