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Confirmation of Neozygites floridana azygospore formation in two-spotted spider mite (Tetranychus urticae) in strains from tropical and temperate regions

Westrum, Karin, Duarte, Vanessa S., Humber, Richard A., Delalibera, Italo, Klingen, Ingeborg
Journal of invertebrate pathology 2014 v.122 pp. 1-5
Neozygites floridana, Tetranychus urticae, fungi, mites, natural enemies, pathogens, temperate zones, zygospores
Neozygites floridana is an obligate fungal pathogen of mites in the family Tetranychidae and is an important natural enemy of the two-spotted spider mite (Tetranychus urticae). Until now, information about the formation of azygospores remained to be fully confirmed. In this study, we document the formation of azygospores by a Brazilian N. floridana strain and the formation of azygospores and zygospores by a Norwegian N. floridana strain, both in the host T. urticae. Evidence of both zygosporogenesis and azygosporogenesis was also found in the same individual in the Norwegian stains. Further we report the presence of immature azygospores with 1–3 nuclei for the Norwegian strains, immature resting spores (probably azygospores) with 1–8 nuclei for the Brazilian strain, and mature resting spores with 2 nuclei for both the Norwegian and the Brazilian strains (azygo- or zygospores). Our observations suggest that the immature resting spore (prespore) of both strains begins in a multinucleate condition but that the nuclear number is reduced during maturation until mature resting spore is binucleate regardless of its origin as a zygospore or azygospore.