Submitted to: International Plant and Animal Genome IX Conference
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: December 28, 2004
Publication Date: January 10, 2005
Citation: McKenzie, C.L., Sinisterra, X., Hunter, W.B., Shatters, R.G. 2005. Begomovirus transcription in the whitefly: A step towards replication? In Proceedings of the International Plant and Animal Genome IX Conference. Technical Abstract: Plant pathogenic begomoviruses have a complex association with their whitefly vectors, and aspects concerning viral genetic activity (genome replication and gene transcription) within the insect remain highly controversial. Virus transcript abundance was assessed by quantifying selected gene transcripts of Tomato mottle virus (ToMoV, a new world bipartite begomovirus) and Tomato yellow leaf curl virus (TYLCV, an old world monopartite begomovirus) in whiteflies (Bemisia tabaci, biotype B) after feeding on virus-infected tomato plants and after subsequent transfer to cotton (a plant immune to the selected begomoviruses). Real-time reverse transcriptase-PCR was performed using specific primers for three ToMoV genes (AV1, BC1, BV1) and three TYLCV genes (V1, V2, and C3). The ToMoV gene transcripts were rapidly lost in whiteflies transferred from tomato to cotton; but, TYLCV transcripts increase in whiteflies transferred to, and allowed to feed on, cotton for up to seven days. Reduction in ToMoV transcript abundance after transferring whitefly to cotton suggests detection of only ingested transient ToMoV transcripts. On the other hand, the increase in abundance of TYLCV transcripts after transfer of whitefly to cotton indicates TYLCV viral transcription activity in the whitefly. This is the first quantitative report of dynamic regulation of a plant DNA virus transcriptional activity in an insect vector.