First report of the invasive MEAM1 whitefly [Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius)], vector of tomato leaf curl viruses in a major tomato-growing region of Maharashtra, India

R. Achari, K.T. Rangaswamy, N. Nagaraju, H.A. Prameela, K.S. Jagadish, K. Govin, B. Karkale, K.S. Shankarappa, G.K. Ramegowda, T.S. Rathod, D.R. Babu, M. Lanting
In India, Maharashtra and Gujarat states supply tomatoes thoughout much of the year. Among the biotic stresses, tomato leaf curl virus diseases (ToLCD) transmitted by whitefly [Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius)] are the most destructive and are known to cause complete crop loss under early infection conditions. Prevalence of an efficient vector in a region increases the impact of the disease. B. tabaci is a 'cryptic species' complex with varied vector efficiency. Whitefly samples (19 samples) were collected from field grown tomato crops from major tomato growing regions in Pune (Otur, Kusur, Pimpalwandi, Yedgaon and Manjarwadi) and Ahmednagar (Sakur) districts of Maharashtra, India. The samples were subjected to PCR amplification of their partial mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase subunit one (mtCO1) genes by using specific primers and the amplicons were sequenced for diversity analysis. The Global Bemisia data set containing 544 unique B. tabaci mtCO1 mitotypes, with out-group sequences, was used as master reference data set. Bayesian analysis was applied to the aligned sample and reference sequences and showed that 84% of the sample whiteflies were of the Middle East Asia minor1 (MEAM1) haplotype while the remaining 16% were the Asia I haplotype. The exotic MEAM1 type is reported to have efficient begomovirus vectoring ability (with high fecundity and a short life cycle) and appears to be displacing the relatively less efficient native (Asia I) population in this region. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of the globally invasive MEAM1 type in the major tomato growing regions of Maharashtra. The predominance of the MEAM1 whiteflies is likely to have a major influence on the incidence and spread of ToLCD in the region.
Achari, R., Rangaswamy, K.T., Nagaraju, N., Prameela, H.A., Jagadish, K.S., Govin, K., Karkale, B., Shankarappa, K.S., Ramegowda, G.K., Rathod, T.S., Babu, D.R. and Lanting, M. (2021). First report of the invasive MEAM1 whitefly [Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius)], vector of tomato leaf curl viruses in a major tomato-growing region of Maharashtra, India. Acta Hortic. 1316, 113-120
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2021.1316.16
https://doi.org/10.17660/ActaHortic.2021.1316.16
Bemisia tabaci, ToLCD, MEAM1, tomato
English

Acta Horticulturae