Location: Vegetable ResearchTitle: Transmission of cucurbit leaf crumple virus (Geminiviridae: Begomovirus) by vector Bemisia tabaci with differing secondary endosymbiont composition
Submitted to: International Congress of Plant Pathology Abstracts and Proceedings
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/14/2023
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: N/A
Technical Abstract: Cucurbit leaf crumple virus (CuLCrV; Geminiviridae) is a limiting factor in the production of cucurbits in the United States. CuLCrV is a bipartite begomovirus transmitted by the sweetpotato whitefly, Bemisia tabaci (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae). Virus transmission is in a persistent, circulative manner, and whitefly secondary endosymbionts, such as Rickettsia, may affect transmission efficiency. Infectious clones of CuLCrV were developed to study the symptomology and disease progression of CuLCrV in watermelon and to identify resistance in watermelon germplasm. As host response and disease progression following agroinoculation may differ from that following vector transmission, whitefly transmission of CuLCrV infectious clones was examined. Virus transmission tests were performed from susceptible versus resistant watermelon varieties using B. tabaci MEAM1 harboring the maternally inherited secondary endosymbiont Rickettsia versus MEAM1 deficient of this endosymbiont. Results demonstrated CuLCrV transmission from susceptible watermelon to the same susceptible variety in 50% of tests using Rickettsia-harboring or Rickettsia-deficient whiteflies. CuLCrV was not detected in susceptible watermelon after transmission test whiteflies acquired virus from the resistant watermelon variety. Quantification of virus titers in leaves after whitefly acquisition access demonstrated significantly lower titers in leaves fed on by Rickettsia-deficient versus Rickettsia-harboring whiteflies. Virus titers in whiteflies post-inoculation access were not significantly different. These results highlight the importance of using resistant watermelon varieties in CuLCrV management. Studies to understand how secondary endosymbiont composition affects virus transmission are ongoing.