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Capsicum Species: Symptomless Hosts and Reservoirs of Tomato yellow leaf curl virus

May 2006 , Volume 96 , Number  5
Pages  447 - 452

J. E. Polston , L. Cohen , T. A. Sherwood , R. Ben-Joseph , and M. Lapidot

First and third authors: Department of Plant Pathology, University of Florida, Gainesville 32611; second, fourth, and fifth authors: Department of Genetics and Vegetables, ARO Volcani Center, Bet Dagan, 50250, Israel

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Accepted for publication 18 January 2006.

Five Capsicum species were tested for susceptibility to Tomato yellow leaf curl virus (TYLCV) and the mild strain of TYLCV (TYLCV-Mld). TYLCV was able to infect 30 of 55 genotypes of C. annuum, one of six genotypes of C. chinense, one of two genotypes of C. baccatum, and the only genotype of C. frutescens tested but was unable to infect the one genotype of C. pubescens tested. This is the first evidence for the susceptibility of C. baccatum, C. chinense, and C. frutescens to TYLCV. Unlike TYLCV isolates, TYLCV-Mld was unable to infect C. chinense. No host differences were observed between the Israeli and Florida isolates of TYLCV. None of the Capsicum species showed symptoms after infection with TYLCV or TYLCV-Mld. TYLCV was detected in fruits of C. annuum, but whiteflies were unable to transmit virus from fruits to plants. White-flies were able to transmit both TYLCV and TYLCV-Mld from infected pepper plants to tomato plants. Pepper plants in research plots were found infected with TYLCV at rates as much as 100%. These data demonstrate the ability of some genotypes of pepper to serve as reservoirs for the acquisition and transmission of TYLCV and TYLCV-Mld.

Additional keywords: begomovirus, ecology, epidemiology, geminivirus, pepper.

© 2006 The American Phytopathological Society