The tomato-potato psyllid Bactericera cockerelli (Sulc) (Hemiptera: Triozidae) is a pest of many solanaceous plants, including tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) and potato (Solanum tuberosum L.). In tomato, feeding by nymphs is associated with "psyllid yellows." B. cockerelli also vectors "Candidatus Liberibacter psyllaurous," an infectious bacterium that causes "vein greening" disease. Decisions about management action are much more effective when guided by robust sampling. However, there are few previous studies of potato psyllid spatial distribution in tomato fields, and no published sequential sampling plans for the pest in tomato. We studied B. cockerelli in various tomato fields in California and used these data to generate a sequential sampling plan. We found that juvenile B. cockerelli in tomato fields exhibit an edge effect, an aggregated distribution, and individuals are primarily located on the bottom of leaves. Psyllids were concentrated in the upper segments of plants, but this changed over time. Finally, we present three binominal sequential sampling plans for managing tomato psyllids in tomato fields. These plans differed from both those for bell pepper (Capsicum annum L.) and potato, indicating that B. cockerelli needs to be sampled using crop-specific sampling plans.
We assessed gene expression profiles in 2,752 twins, using a classic twin design to quantify expression heritability and quantitative trait loci (eQTLs) in peripheral blood. The most highly heritable genes (?777) were grouped into distinct expression clusters, enriched in gene-poor regions, associated with specific gene function or ontology classes, and strongly associated with disease designation. The design enabled a comparison of twin-based heritability to estimates based on dizygotic identity-by-descent sharing and distant genetic relatedness. Consideration of sampling variation suggests that previous heritability estimates have been upwardly biased. Genotyping of 2,494 twins enabled powerful identification of eQTLs, which we further examined in a replication set of 1,895 unrelated subjects. A large number of non-redundant local eQTLs (6,756) met replication criteria, whereas a relatively small number of distant eQTLs (165) met quality control and replication standards. Our results provide a new resource toward understanding the genetic control of transcription.
Potato psyllids (Bactericera cockerelli Sulc) are a pest on solanaceous crop plants, including bell peppers. Potato psyllids vector Candidatus Liberibacter psyllaurous, but bell peppers (Capsicum annum L.) do not exhibit symptoms from infection. Potato psyllids show variation in spatial patterns and host choice with cultivar and plant species. Consequently, a study of spatial distribution and sampling plan specific to bell peppers is necessary for management of this insect pest, as those developed for other crops are unlikely to transfer among crops.
The potato psyllid, Bactericera cockerelli (Sulc) (Hemiptera: Triozidae), is a serious pest of potatoes (Solanum tuberosum L.) that can cause yield loss by direct feeding on crop plants and by vectoring a bacterial pathogen, Candidatus Liberibacer psyllaurous. Current pest management practices rely on the use of insecticides to control the potato psyllid to lower disease incidences and increase yields. Although many studies have focused on the mortality that insecticides can cause on potato psyllid populations, little is known regarding the behavioral responses of the potato psyllid to insecticides or whether insecticides can decrease pathogen transmission. Thus, the objectives of this study were to determine the effects of insecticides on adult potato psyllid behaviors, the residual effects of insecticides on potato psyllid behaviors over time, and effects of these insecticides on Ca. L. psyllaurous transmission. Insecticides tested included imidacloprid, kaolin particle film, horticultural spray oil, abamectin, and pymetrozine. All insecticides significantly reduced probing durations and increased the amount of time adult psyllids spent off the leaflets, suggesting that these chemicals may be deterrents to feeding as well as repellents. Nonfeeding behaviors such as tasting, resting, and cleaning showed variable relationships with the different insecticide treatments over time. The insecticides imidacloprid and abamectin significantly lowered transmission of Ca. L. psyllaurous compared with untreated controls. The implications of our results for the selection of insecticides useful for an integrated pest management program for potato psyllid control are discussed.
Orthopterans are suitable model organisms for investigations of regeneration mechanisms in the auditory system. Regeneration has been described in the auditory systems of locusts (Caelifera) and of crickets (Ensifera). In this study, we comparatively investigate the neural regeneration in the auditory system in the bush cricket Mecopoda elongata. A crushing of the tympanal nerve in the foreleg of M. elongata results in a loss of auditory information transfer. Physiological recordings of the tympanal nerve suggest outgrowing fibers 5 days after crushing. An anatomical regeneration of the fibers within the central nervous system starts 10 days after crushing. The neuronal projection reaches the target area at day 20. Threshold values to low frequency airborne sound remain high after crushing, indicating a lower regeneration capability of this group of fibers. However, within the central target area the low frequency areas are also innervated. Recordings of auditory interneurons show that the regenerating fibers form new functional connections starting at day 20 after crushing.
Parasitoids are important organisms in the regulation of insect herbivores in natural, urban, and agricultural ecosystems. The impact of pollutants acting on parasitoids has not been extensively reviewed. This prompted us to propose a falsifiable null hypothesis (pollutants have no effects on parasitoids) and two alternative hypotheses (pollution negatively or positively affects parasitoids) to assess in the available literature the effects of pollutants acting on parasitoids. We found 26 studies examining 39 biological systems that met our criteria for inclusion. Of these studies, 18 of the 39 biological systems (46.2%) supported the null hypothesis while 18 (46.2%) supported the first alternative hypothesis in which pollutants exhibited negative effects on parasitoids. Only a small percentage of the studies (7.6%, 3 of 39) supported the second alternative hypothesis suggesting that pollutants had positive effects on parasitoids. We provide a synthesis of the available data by pollution type, summarize trends for different pollutants, and suggest future areas of research.
Bactericera cockerelli (Sulc) (Hemiptera: Triozidae) is a major pest of potato, (Solanum tuberosum L.), tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.), and peppers (Capsicum spp.). The purpose of our research was to identify and determine the impact of natural enemies on B. cockerelli population dynamics. Through 2 yr of field studies (2009-2010) at four different sites and laboratory feeding tests, we identified minute pirate bug, Orius tristicolor (White) (Hemiptera: Anthocoridae); western bigeyed bug, Geocoris pallens Stål (Hemiptera:Geocoridae), and convergent lady beetle, Hippodamia convergens Guérin-Méneville (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) as key natural enemies of B. cockerelli in southern California potatoes, tomatoes, and bell peppers. In natural enemy exclusion cage experiments in the potato crop and in American nightshade, Solanum americanum Miller, the number of B. cockerelli surviving was significantly greater in the closed cage treatments, thus confirming the affect natural enemies can have on B. cockerelli. We discuss how this information can be used in an integrated pest management program for B. cockerelli.
The potato psyllid is a serious pest of potatoes. Sampling plans on potatoes for the potato psyllid have yet to be developed, thus the authors objectives were (1) to determine the most efficient within-plant sampling unit, (2) to determine the spatial dispersion of potato psyllids in potato fields and (3) to develop a binomial sequential sampling plan for this pest.
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