Submitted to: Southwestern Entomologist
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/20/2011
Publication Date: 9/29/2011
Citation: Marutani-Hert, M., Hunter, W.B., Morgan, J.K. 2011. Associated bacteria of Asian citrus psyllid (Hemiptera: Psyllidae: Diaphorina citri). Southwestern Entomologist. 36(3):323-330. Available: http://www.bioone.org/doi/full/10.3958/059.036.0309. Interpretive Summary: A study was conducted to identify bacteria associated with the Asian citrus psyllid. This psyllid is important to the U.S. citrus industry as a vector of bacterial pathogens associated with citrus greening disease, also known as Huanglongbing. Huanglongbing is one of the most severe diseases of citrus crops worldwide. We found that the psyllid microbiome consists of a number of different bacteria. Two bacteria were identified as new types not previously reported to be associated with psyllids.
Technical Abstract: Using a genetics approach two new bacterial species were identified from the Asian citrus psyllid, Diaphorina citri Kuwayama (Hemiptera: Psyllidae). Psyllids are economically important in the U.S. as vectors of the pathogen associated with citrus greening disease (Huanglongbing). Huanglongbing is one of the most severe diseases of citrus crops worldwide and is associated with psyllid-transmitted bacterium, Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus. The microbiome of the Asian citrus psyllid was investigated; analyzing the Eubacterial 16S rDNA amplified from adults, eggs, and 20 day old psyllid cell cultures. The nucleotide sequences showed significant homologies to 10 distinct types of bacteria. Of the four bacteria species detected in cell cultures, two new species were identified which had not previously reported to be associated with psyllids. Staphylococcus is a common enteric bacterium; these data support finding a type I strain which is similar. Another related to Methylocystis heyeri is a bacterium typically isolated from acidic environments. Psyllid cell cultures are at a slightly acidic pH of 6.48, with the cultures derived from a diverse set of tissues that may include enteric tissues. These associated microbes of Asian citrus psyllid provide new insights into microbial interactions and avenues for developing novel management approaches which could use native psyllid bacteria against the pathogenic bacteria associated with Huanglongbing.