Investigating Vector-Virus-Host Plant Interactions That Influence the Acquisition and Transmission of Mixed Infections
Type of DegreeMaster's Thesis
Entomology and Plant Pathology
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Tomato yellow leaf curl virus (TYLCV) and Tomato mottle virus (ToMoV) (Geminiviridae, Begomovirus) are two economically important, tomato-infecting viruses that occur in single and mixed infections in the United States. Mixed infections of plant viruses can be important factors in influencing disease severity, genetic diversity of the co-infecting viruses, transmission rates, and virus evolution. The role of the vector in propagating these mixed infections has been largely ignored. In this study, the role of vector transmission on the propagation of single and mixed infections of TYLCV and ToMoV by the whitefly vector, Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius), in tomato was investigated. A transmission experiment was designed to investigate how the acquisition of these viruses by B. tabaci, either sequentially from a single infection or mixed infections scenarios, influences the probability of transmission.