Link to home

Transmission of Pineapple Mealybug Wilt-Associated Virus by Two Species of Mealybug (Dysmicoccus spp.)

November 1998 , Volume 88 , Number  11
Pages  1,224 - 1,230

D. M. Sether , D. E. Ullman , and J. S. Hu

First and third authors: Department of Plant Pathology, University of Hawaii, Honolulu 96822; and second author: Department of Entomology, University of California, Davis 95616

Go to article:
Accepted for publication 4 August 1998.

Closterovirus-like particles associated with mealybug wilt of pineapple were acquired and transmitted by the pink pineapple mealybug, Dysmicoccus brevipes, and the gray pineapple mealybug, D. neobrevipes. Mealybugs acquired pineapple mealybug wilt-associated virus (PMWaV) from infected pineapple plants or detached leaves. The virus was detected in plants by tissue blot immunoassay and confirmed by immunosorbent electron microscopy. Plants exposed to mealybugs reared on PMWaV-free pineapple tissue remained uninfected. The presence of ants was correlated with an increased rate of virus spread when caged with D. brevipes. All stages of D. neobrevipes acquired PMWaV, although vector efficiency decreased significantly in older adult females. The probability of a single third-instar immature transmitting the virus was 0.04. Both species of mealybug acquired and transmitted PMWaV from infected pineapple material that had been clonally propagated for decades, and both species acquired PMWaV from sources previously infected with the virus by the other mealybug species.

Additional keywords: Pheidole megacephala , virus transmission .

© 1998 The American Phytopathological Society