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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Charleston, South Carolina » Vegetable Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #405352

Research Project: Basic and Applied Approaches for Pest Management in Vegetable Crops

Location: Vegetable Research

Title: Cucurbit leaf crumple virus transmission by vector Bemisia tabaci harboring different endosymbionts

item Andreason, Sharon
item Kousik, Chandrasekar - Shaker

Submitted to: 3rd Hemipteran-Plant Interactions Symposium Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/22/2022
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A

Interpretive Summary: N/A

Technical Abstract: Cucurbit leaf crumple virus (CuLCrV; Geminiviridae) is a bipartite begomovirus transmitted by the sweetpotato whitefly, Bemisia tabaci (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae). In recent years CuLCrV has emerged as a limiting factor in the production of cucurbits, especially watermelon, in the southeastern United States. CuLCrV is transmitted by whiteflies in a persistent, circulative manner, and whitefly secondary endosymbionts, such as Rickettsia, may affect transmission efficiency. To study the symptomology and disease progression of CuLCrV in watermelon and to identify resistance in the germplasm, infectious clones of a South Carolina strain were developed. As host response and disease progression following agroinoculation may differ from that following vector transmission, whitefly transmission of CuLCrV infectious clones was examined. 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 in 50% of tests using Rickettsia-harboring or Rickettsia-deficient whiteflies. No transmission occurred 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.