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      Onion Thrips (Thysanoptera: Thripidae) Feeding Promotes Infection By Pantoea ananatis in Onion

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          Abstract

          Onion thrips, Thrips tabaci Lindeman, is a primary insect pest of onions ( Allium cepa) worldwide. Onion thrips cause feeding damage by destroying epidermal tissue. They are also vectors of Pantoea ananatis (Serrano) Mergaert, the bacteria that causes center rot. Onions with center rot develop white streaks with water-soaked margins along the onion leaves, which turn necrotic and lead to bulb rot during storage. The role of thrips feeding on the establishment and progression of bacterial infection in onions has not been investigated. Onions infested with thrips and inoculated with P. ananatis had more necrotic tissue and symptoms were more severe with increasing thrips density. We conducted a fluorescence microscopy study that examined how P. ananatis (expressing a fluorescence protein gene) colonized a control group of onions without thrips in comparison to a test group of onions with thrips. We found that P. ananatis colonized some onions in the control group because of naturally existing wounds in the epidermal tissue but more colonization was found in the thrips infested group because of the increased presence of entry points caused by thrips feeding. Overall, our results demonstrate that wounds caused by thrips feeding facilitate center rot development by providing entry sites for the bacteria into leaf tissue.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          J Econ Entomol
          J. Econ. Entomol
          jee
          Journal of Economic Entomology
          Oxford University Press (US )
          0022-0493
          1938-291X
          December 2017
          03 November 2017
          05 December 2018
          : 110
          : 6
          : 2301-2307
          Affiliations
          [1 ]Department of Entomology, Michigan State University
          [2 ]Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, Michigan State University
          Author notes
          Corresponding author, e-mail: szendrei@ 123456msu.edu
          Article
          PMC6281329 PMC6281329 6281329 tox273
          10.1093/jee/tox273
          6281329
          29112728
          46dad43d-4e18-486d-9fa5-bef578e9f02f
          © The Author(s) 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.
          Page count
          Pages: 7
          Funding
          Funded by: University of Wisconsin-Madison 10.13039/100007015
          Categories
          Arthropods in Relation to Plant Disease

          fluorescence microscopy, Thrips tabaci ,bacterial center rot,insect–bacteria interaction

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