Evidence for pre-zygotic reproductive barrier between the B and Q biotypes of Bemisia tabaci (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae).
ABSTRACT The degree of reproductive isolation between the B and Q biotypes of the whitefly Bemisia tabaci (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) is currently not clear. Laboratory experiments have shown that the two biotypes are capable of producing viable F1 hybrids but that these females are sterile as their F2 generation failed to develop, indicating, most likely, a post-zygotic reproductive barrier. Here, we confirm, by molecular and ecological tools, that the B and Q biotypes of Israel are genetically isolated and provide two independent lines of evidence that support the existence of a pre-zygotic reproductive barrier between them. Firstly, monitoring of mating behaviors in homogeneous and heterogeneous couples indicated no copulation events in heterogeneous couples compared to approximately 50% in homogeneous B and Q couples. Secondly, we could not detect the presence of sperm in the spermathecae of females from heterogeneous couples, compared to 50% detection in intra-B biotype crosses and 15% detection in intra-Q biotype crosses. The existence of pre-zygotic reproductive barriers in Israeli B and Q colonies may indicate a reinforcement process in which mating discrimination is strengthened between sympatric taxa that were formerly allopatric, to avoid maladaptive hybridization. As the two biotypes continued to perform all courtship stages prior to copulation, we also conducted mixed cultures experiments in order to test the reproductive consequences of inter-biotype courtship attempts. In mixed cultures, a significant reduction in female fecundity was observed for the Q biotype but not for the B biotype, suggesting an asymmetric reproductive interference effect in favour of the B biotype. The long-term outcome of this effect is yet to be determined since additional environmental forces may reduce the probability of demographic displacement of one biotype by the other in overlapping niches.
Article: Factors affecting population dynamics of maternally transmitted endosymbionts in Bemisia tabaci.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: While every individual of Bemisia tabaci (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) harbors the primary symbiont (P-symbiont) Portiera, the infection frequencies of the six secondary symbionts (S-symbionts) including Hamiltonella, Arsenophonus, Cardinium, Wolbachia, Rickettsia and Fritschea vary greatly among different populations. To characterize the factors influencing the infection dynamics of the six S-symbionts in B. tabaci, gene-specific PCR were conducted to screen for the presence of the P-symbiont Portiera and the six S-symbionts in 61 (17 B and 44 Q biotypes) field populations collected from different plant species and locations in China. All individuals of the 61 populations hosted the P-symbiont Portiera, but none of them harbored Arsenophonus and Fritschea. The presence and infection rates of Hamiltonella, Cardinium, Rickettsia, Wolbachia and their co-infections Rickettsia + Hamiltonella (RH), Rickettsia + Cardinium (RC), Hamiltonella + Cardinium (HC) and Rickettsia + Hamiltonella + Cardinium (RHC) varied significantly among the 61 field populations; and the observed variations can be explained by biotypes, sexes, host plants and geographical locations of these field populations. Taken together, at least three factors including biotype, host plant and geographical location affect the infection dynamics of S-symbionts in B. tabaci.PLoS ONE 01/2012; 7(2):e30760. · 4.09 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Species delimitation directly impacts on global biosecurity. It is a critical element in the decisions made by national governments in regard to the flow of trade and to the biosecurity measures imposed to protect countries from the threat of invasive species. Here we outline a novel approach to species delimitation, "tip to root", for two highly invasive insect pests, Bemisia tabaci (sweetpotato whitefly) and Lymantria dispar (Asian gypsy moth). Both species are of concern to biosecurity, but illustrate the extremes of phylogenetic resolution that present the most complex delimitation issues for biosecurity; B. tabaci having extremely high intra-specific genetic variability and L. dispar composed of relatively indistinct subspecies. This study tests a series of analytical options to determine their applicability as tools to provide more rigorous species delimitation measures and consequently more defensible species assignments and identification of unknowns for biosecurity. Data from established DNA barcode datasets (COI), which are becoming increasingly considered for adoption in biosecurity, were used here as an example. The analytical approaches included the commonly used Kimura two-parameter (K2P) inter-species distance plus four more stringent measures of taxon distinctiveness, (1) Rosenberg's reciprocal monophyly, (P(AB)),1 (2) Rodrigo's (P(randomly distinct)),2 (3) genealogical sorting index, (gsi),3 and (4) General mixed Yule-coalescent (GMYC).4,5 For both insect datasets, a comparative analysis of the methods revealed that the K2P distance method does not capture the same level of species distinctiveness revealed by the other three measures; in B. tabaci there are more distinct groups than previously identified using the K2P distances and for L. dipsar far less variation is apparent within the predefined subspecies. A consensus for the results from P(AB), P(randomly distinct) and gsi offers greater statistical confidence as to where genetic limits might be drawn. In the species cases here, the results clearly indicate that there is a need for more gene sampling to substantiate either the new cohort of species indicated for B. tabaci or to detect the established subspecies taxonomy of L. dispar. Given the ease of use through the Geneious species delimitation plugins, similar analysis of such multi-gene datasets would be easily accommodated. Overall, the tip to root approach described here is recommended where careful consideration of species delimitation is required to support crucial biosecurity decisions based on accurate species identification.Evolutionary bioinformatics online 01/2012; 8:1-37. · 1.23 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Since Panayiotis Gennadius first identified the whitefly, Aleyrodes tabaci in 1889, there have been numerous revisions of the taxonomy of what has since become one of the world's most damaging insect pests. Most of the taxonomic revisions have been based on synonymising different species under the name Bemisia tabaci. It is now considered that there is sufficient biological, behavioural and molecular genetic data to support its being a cryptic species complex composed of at least 34 morphologically indistinguishable species. The first step in revising the taxonomy of this complex involves matching the A. tabaci collected in 1889 to one of the members of the species complex using molecular genetic data. To do this we extracted and then amplified a 496 bp fragment from the 3' end of the mitochondrial DNA cytochrome oxidase one (mtCOI) gene belonging to a single whitefly taken from Gennadius' original 1889 collection. The sequence identity of this 123 year-old specimen enabled unambiguous assignment to a single haplotype known from 13 Mediterranean locations across Greece and Tunisia. This enabled us to unambiguously assign the Gennadius A. tabaci to the member of the B. tabaci cryptic species complex known as Mediterranean or as it is commonly, but erroneously referred to, as the 'Q-biotype'. Mediterranean is therefore the real B. tabaci. This study demonstrates the importance of matching museum syntypes with known species to assist in the delimitation of cryptic species based on the organism's biology and molecular genetic data. This study is the first step towards the reclassification of B. tabaci which is central to an improved understanding how best to manage this globally important agricultural and horticultural insect pest complex.PLoS ONE 01/2012; 7(11):e50550. · 4.09 Impact Factor