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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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Research Project: Time-Course of Effects on Cotton Squares from Nymphal Lygus Feeding

Location: Crop Diseases, Pests and Genetics

Project Number: 5302-22000-010-15
Project Type: Specific Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Jan 01, 2014
End Date: Dec 31, 2014

Objective:
The broad goal of this research is to perform a pulse-chase experiment to study the time course of anatomical responses of cotton squares to nymphal lygus feeding. The specific objectives are to: 1) apply a standardized duration of nymphal lygus feeding to individual squares on multiple cotton plants, and then 2) use histology and light microscopy of fed-upon squares to document the cellular damage and (if possible) healing responses of the tissues after varying periods of time.

Approach:
Electrical penetration graph technology will be used to measure and apply a standardized duration of feeding by nymphal lygus bugs (one at a time) to multiple cotton squares (flower buds). Plants will then be transferred to a greenhouse and held for varying holding periods (e.g., 0, ½, 1, 2, and 4 days). The test will be replicated 3 – 4 times per holding period, for a total of 15 – 20 insects and squares. After the holding periods are completed, fed-upon cotton squares will be excised, fixed, dehydrated, embedded in paraffin, sectioned, mounted on slides, stained, and examined using compound light microscopy. Anatomical changes due to damage and/or healing will be visually correlated with types of waveforms/feeding performed during the standardized duration.

Last Modified: 8/27/2014
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