Submitted to: Society of Invertebrate Pathology
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/2/2007
Publication Date: 8/12/2007
Citation: Meyer, J., Hoy, M., Hall, D.G., Boucias, D. 2007. Entomopathogenic fungi infecting the Asian citrus psyllid, Diaphorina citri (Homoptera: Psyllidae), in Florida [poster abstract.] Society of Invertebrate Pathology. http://www.floridagrower.net/forging_ahead/200051121_psyllid.html Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: The Asian citrus psyllid, Diaphorina citri is an invasive pest that vectors citrus greening disease. In 2005-2006 mycosed psyllids displaying two phenotypes were collected in central Florida. The major pathogen, identified by morphological and genetic analyses, was a novel isolate related to Hirsutella citriformis. In vitro cultures of the fungus were slow-growing and produced synnemata similar to those found on mycosed D. citri. In laboratory bioassays, high levels of mortality were observed in D. citri that were exposed to the conidia-bearing synnemata produced in vivo and in vitro. Infected psyllids had an abundance of septate hyphal bodies in their hemolymph and exhibited behavioral symptoms of disease. Isolate-specific PCR primers were designed to detect the pathogen in seasonal samples of psyllid populations. The second pathogen, identified as an isolate of Paecilomyces fumosoroseus (Pfr), was differentiated from the Florida isolate Pfr97 by amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) analysis and by in vitro growth characteristics. Healthy adult D. citri from a laboratory colony died within 72 hr after exposure to field-collected cadavers and in vitro cultures of Pfr ACP. A series of arthropods were susceptible to infection with Pfr AsCP, indicating that this pathogen has a broad host range.