Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Whiteflies and plant viruses can help each other to speed up biological invasion

31.01.2007
An invasive whitefly has developed mutualistic relationships with the plant viruses it transmits and is able to increase its population much faster on virus-infected plants than on healthy plants, whereas its indigenous counterpart is unable to do so, according to the new research carried out at Zhejiang University and Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, China.

Twenty years ago in 1986 in the USA, Florida experienced outbreaks of what is now known as whitefly (Bemisia tabaci) biotype “B”, first in greenhouse poinsettia, then in a wide range of vegetable, ornamental and field crops. Soon similar outbreaks were seen in other States within the USA and many other countries around the world.

The outbreaks of the B whitefly have often been followed by pandemics of a group of plant viruses called begomoviruses on crops such as tomato and tobacco. These viruses are transmitted by this whitefly. In many countries and regions, including China, the outbreaks of the B whitefly have also seen the gradual disappearance of some native whitefly biotypes.

Many scientists around the world have been investigating why the B whitefly is so invasive. It is now widely accepted that the B whitefly is most likely to have originated from the Mediterranean/North Africa region, and its recent widespread invasion has been assisted by the worldwide flower trade. The question remains how this pest can increase so rapidly and displace native biotypes of whitefly after it has been transported to new localities.

The research compared development, survival, fecundity and population increase of the invasive B whitefly and an indigenous whitefly (called ZHJ1) on both virus-infected and healthy tobacco plants. Compared to its performance on healthy plants, the invasive B whitefly had higher fecundity and longevity by 12 and 6 fold when feeding on plants infected by one virus, and by 18 and 7 fold when feeding on plants infected by another virus. Population density of the B whitefly on virus-infected plants reached 2-13 times that on healthy plants in 56 days. No doubt increase of infectious whiteflies will in turn speed up virus pandemics. In contrast, the indigenous whitefly performed similarly on healthy and virus-infected plants.

“This is the first study that shows an invasive insect has such a mutualistic relationship with the viruses it transmits, whereas its indigenous counterpart does not,” said Professor Shu-Sheng Liu, corresponding author of the study, from the Institute of Insect Sciences, Zhejiang University. “We believe that the mutualism between the B whitefly and the viruses may contribute to the ability of the B whitefly to both invade and displace indigenous whiteflies, as well as causing disease pandemics of the viruses associated with this vector.”

The study also shows that infection of the whiteflies per se has limited effects on the survival and fecundity of the vectors, and the B whitefly acquires the benefits through feeding on the virus-infected plants. Thus the mutualism is indirect. The researchers believe that this kind of mutualism may exist in many circumstances and should receive more attention in the research and management of biological invasions.

Citation: Jiu M, Zhou XP, Tong L, Xu J, Yang X et al (2007) Vector-virus mutualism accelerates population increase of an invasive whitefly. PLoS ONE 2(1): e182. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0000182.

Shan Ling | alfa
Further information:
http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0000182
http://www.plosone.org

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Climate change, population growth may lead to open ocean aquaculture
05.10.2017 | Oregon State University

nachricht New machine evaluates soybean at harvest for quality
04.10.2017 | University of Illinois College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Neutron star merger directly observed for the first time

University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event

On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...

Im Focus: Breaking: the first light from two neutron stars merging

Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.

Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....

Im Focus: Smart sensors for efficient processes

Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).

When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...

Im Focus: Cold molecules on collision course

Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.

How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...

Im Focus: Shrinking the proton again!

Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.

It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ASEAN Member States discuss the future role of renewable energy

17.10.2017 | Event News

World Health Summit 2017: International experts set the course for the future of Global Health

10.10.2017 | Event News

Climate Engineering Conference 2017 Opens in Berlin

10.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Terahertz spectroscopy goes nano

20.10.2017 | Information Technology

Strange but true: Turning a material upside down can sometimes make it softer

20.10.2017 | Materials Sciences

NRL clarifies valley polarization for electronic and optoelectronic technologies

20.10.2017 | Interdisciplinary Research

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>