PLoS ONE (2014) 9 (3 - e91802)

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Qi Su, Wen Xie, Shaoli Wang, Qingjun Wu, Murad Ghanim and Youjun Zhang (2014)
Location of symbionts in the whitefly Bemisia tabaci affects their densities during host development and environmental stress
PLoS ONE 9 (3 - e91802)
Abstract: Bacterial symbionts often enhance the physiological capabilities of their arthropod hosts and enable their hosts to expand into formerly unavailable niches, thus leading to biological diversification. Many arthropods, including the worldwide invasive whitefly Bemisia tabaci, have individuals simultaneously infected with symbionts of multiple genera that occur in different locations in the host. This study examined the population dynamics of symbionts that are located in different areas within B. tabaci. While densities of Portiera and Hamiltonella (which are located in bacteriocytes) appeared to be well-regulated during host development, densities of Rickettsia (which are not located in bacteriocytes) were highly variable among individual hosts during host development. Host mating did not significantly affect symbiont densities. Infection by Tomato yellow leaf curl virus did not affect Portiera and Hamiltonella densities in either sex, but increased Rickettsia densities in females. High and low temperatures did not affect Portiera and Hamiltonella densities, but low temperature (15°C) significantly suppressed Rickettsia densities whereas high temperature (35°C) had little effect on Rickettsia densities. The results are consistent with the view that the population dynamics of bacterial symbionts in B. tabaci are regulated by symbiont location within the host and that the regulation reflects adaptation between the bacteria and insect.
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Database assignments for author(s): Shaoli Wang, Qing Jun Wu, Murad Ghanim

Research topic(s) for pests/diseases/weeds:
general biology - morphology - evolution


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Beneficial Pest/Disease/Weed Crop/Product Country Quarant.


Bemisia tabaci biotype MEAM1 Cabbage (Brassica oleracea) China (NE)