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Title: Haplotyping studies of the potato psyllid, Bactericera cockerelli, in Mexico and Central America

item Swisher Grimm, Kylie
item ARP, ALEX - University Of Texas
item BEXTINE, BLAKE - University Of Texas
item AGUILAR ALVAREZ, ESTELA - Zamorano, Panamerican School Of Agriculture
item Crosslin, James
item Munyaneza, Joseph - Joe

Submitted to: Southwestern Entomologist
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/8/2013
Publication Date: 6/20/2013
Citation: Swisher, K.D., Arp, A., Bextine, B., Aguilar Alvarez, E., Crosslin, J., Munyaneza, J.E. 2013. Haplotyping studies of the potato psyllid, Bactericera cockerelli, in Mexico and Central America. Southwestern Entomologist. 38:201-208.

Interpretive Summary: The potato psyllid is a serious pest of potato and other solanaceous crops. This insect is attributed to the economically devastating zebra chip disease of potato. This disease was originally found in eastern Mexico in the 1990s, but since has spread throughout the central and western United States and New Zealand. Recent reports have identified this disease in Central America, suggesting that it is spreading North and South from eastern Mexico. To understand the movement of this insect and the pathogens it transmits, genetic analysis to identify different populations of the potato psyllid are critical. These genetic analyses have been conducted on psyllids collected in the United States, and have identified three different populations. Here, the technique used previously to identify the psyllid populations was utilized to identify which population(s) exist in Central America and central Mexico. This knowledge will help in the development of disease management tools across North and Central America, and New Zealand.

Technical Abstract: The potato psyllid, Bactericera cockerelli (Sulc) (Hemiptera: Triozidae), is a serious pest of potato and other solanaceous crops in North and Central America. This insect transmits “Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum”, the putative causal agent of zebra chip disease of potato. Recent studies have identified three genetically distinct haplotypes of B. cockerelli in the United States, correlating to geographical regions: Northwestern, Western, and Central. Although biological differences among these haplotypes, including how effective they transmit the bacterium and their dispersal and overwintering capabilities, are largely unexamined, identification of regional psyllid haplotypes is essential to effectively manage diseases caused by the pathogens they transmit to plants. Here, the same haplotyping tool used previously in the United States, high resolution melting analysis targeted to the B. cockerelli mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase subunit I-like gene, was utilized to identify the psyllid populations present in Mexico and Central America. Potato psyllids from Honduras, Nicaragua, El Salvador and central Mexico were identified as belonging to the Central haplotype.