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Title: Interaction of Aceria mangiferae with Fusarium mangiferae, the causal agent of mango malformation disease

item Atinsky, Gamliel
item Freeman, E.
item Szteinberg, A.
item Maymon, M.
item Ochoa, Ronald - Ron
item Belausov, E.
item Palevsky, E.

Submitted to: Journal of Phytopathology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/14/2008
Publication Date: 10/28/2008
Citation: Atinsky, G., Freeman, E., Szteinberg, A., Maymon, M., Ochoa, R., Belausov, E., Palevsky, E. 2008. Interaction of Aceria mangiferae with Fusarium mangiferae, the causal agent of mango malformation disease. Journal of Phytopathology. 99:152-159.

Interpretive Summary: The family Eriophyidae, gall and bud mites, are pests of fruit crops. One of the most important pests is the mango bud mite. Mango production is a booming industry worldwide, including in the U.S.. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations estimated world wide production in 2004 at more than 24 million tons. Field recognition and control of the mango bud mite is difficult because they are small and hidden in the small leaves or buds. This paper describes the ecological association between the mango bud mite and major fungal diseases. We found that the mite can carry and vector the pathogen. The results of this research are important to phytopathologists, biologists, entomologists, zoologists, fruit tree farmers, and students involved in insect pest management studies.

Technical Abstract: The study examines the role of the mango bud mite, Aceria mangiferae, in carrying Fusarium mangiferae’s conidia, vectoring them into the penetration sites and assisting fungal penetration and dissemination. Conidia that were exposed to a green fluorescent protein (gfp)-marked isolate of F. mangiferae were observed clinging to the mite’s body. Potted mango plants were inoculated with conidia in the presence or absence of mites. Agar plugs bearing either bud mites and/or pathogens were placed on leaves near the apical buds on potted mango plants. Conidia were found in bud bracts only when both mites and conidia were co-inoculated on the plant, demonstrating that the mite vectored the conidia into the apical bud. Frequency and severity of infected buds were significantly higher in the presence of mites revealing its significant role in fungal penetration. Conidia and mite presence were monitored in a diseased orchard over a two year period. No windborne bud mites bearing conidia were found in the traps, in contrast high numbers of windborne conidia were detected. These results suggest that A. mangiferae can carry and vector the pathogen to the apical bud and assist in fungal penetration but does not play a role in aerial dissemination of conidia.