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The effect of pre-acquisition starvation on aphid transmission of potyviruses during observed and electrically recorded stylet penetrations

Powell, G.
Entomologia experimentalis et applicata 1993 v.66 no.3 pp. 255-260
Beet mosaic virus, Myzus persicae, Potato virus Y, cell membranes, electronic circuits, gold, insects, starvation, stylets, virus transmission
The effect of pre-acquisition starvation on stylet penetration behaviour by the aphid Myzus persicae (Sulz.) and the consequent non-persistent transmission of the potyviruses beet mosaic virus (BMV) and potato virus Y (PVY) were investigated. Visual observations indicated that starved aphids initiated penetrations earlier and penetrated for shorter periods than non-starved insects. Tethering with a fine gold wire did not affect these observations with either starved or non-starved aphids, but starvation caused increased PVY and BMV acquisition efficiency, regardless of tethering. Tethered aphids were then made part of an electrical circuit and their stylet activities investigated in detail. Electrically recorded aphids also acquired and inoculated both potyviruses more efficiently when starved, and these acquisitions and inoculations were associated with stylet punctures of plant cell membranes. However, starvation did not affect the occurrence of electrically recorded membrane puncture, suggesting that non-behavioural factors may contribute to the enhancement of virus transmission by pre-acquisition starvation.