Competence and specificity of thrips in the transmission of tomato spotted wilt virus

T. Nagata

Research output: Thesisinternal PhD, WU


<p>The study described in this thesis aims to elucidate the fate and pathway of ingested TSWV in thrips during their development from larvae to adult. Insight in this process will contribute to a better understanding of the factors regulating and determining vector competence and specificities.<p>Analysis of the differences in virus susceptibility among thrips species or populations was approached by infection of cell cultures. The methodology developed and the media used to prepare primary cell cultures of the species <em>F. occidentalis</em> and <em>T. tabaci</em> are described and discussed in Chapter 2. The cultures obtained were derived from an efficiently transmitting <em>F. occidentalis</em> population and from a non-transmitting <em>T.</em><em>tabaci</em> population which was not able to transmit the virus. The results obtained by inoculation of these cultures with preparations of purified TSWV particles are described in Chapter 3. To analyse the tissue tropism of TSWV in thrips in relation to its vector competence, a novel histological technique, called whole mount immunofluorescent staining (WMIS) was developed (Chapter 4). Using this technique and other immunohistochemical techniques, infection of the midguts and salivary glands during the development of <em>F. occidentalis</em> thrips was described (Chapter 4). By the combination of all techniques, the temporal development of the virus infection in larvae and adults could be elucidated. To define the various barriers which may regulate the development of virus infection, specific TSWV mutants were used which failed either to infect the thrips or to convert the thrips in a transmitter after infection. Definite barriers were observed at the level of virus entry in the midgut epithelium or virus escape from the midgut to the salivary glands (Chapter 5). The pathway of the virus within the thrips and the mechanism determining the vector specificities were further unravelled by analysing the infection in thrips of a transmitting F. occidentalis population and a nontransmitting T. tabaci population (Chapter 6). Concluding remarks of this study is presented in Chapter 7.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • Goldbach, R.W., Promotor, External person
  • Peters, D., Promotor, External person
Award date22 Jun 1999
Place of PublicationS.l.
Print ISBNs9789058080769
Publication statusPublished - 1999


  • tomato spotted wilt virus
  • plant viruses
  • plant pathogens
  • plant diseases
  • thrips
  • vectors
  • transmission
  • agricultural entomology

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