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Bioecological aspects, morphological and molecular characterization of different morphospecies of Brevipalpus phoenicis (Acari: Tenuipalpidae)

Grant number: 12/14268-2
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctoral
Effective date (Start): October 01, 2012
Effective date (End): November 30, 2014
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Agronomy - Plant Health
Principal Investigator:Mário Eidi Sato
Grantee:Jeferson Luiz de Carvalho Mineiro
Host Institution: Instituto Biológico (IB). Agência Paulista de Tecnologia dos Agronegócios (APTA). Secretaria de Agricultura e Abastecimento (São Paulo - Estado). Campinas , SP, Brazil


The mites Brevipalpus phoenicis (Geijskes) have cosmopolitan distribution and live on more than 450 species of host plants. They are considered pests of economically importance on crops such as citrus, coffee, various fruit trees and ornamentals. B. phoenicis is associated with the transmission of several viruses, including the Citrus leprosis virus (CiLV) and Coffee ringspot virus (CoRSV). During the visit of Dr. Ronald Ochoa (Scientific Researcher of USDA ARS, BARC, Beltsville, Maryland, USA) to Brazil in May 2011, it was noted the existence of different morphospecies of "Brevipalpus phoenicis", currently considered a single species of mite. The discovery of the presence of several "species" (morphospecies) in the "complex Brevipalpus phoenicis" may imply the need to establish different strategies for pest management in citrus and other crops, if differences are observed among these morphospecies in the susceptibility to pesticides, the geographical distribution, the host preferences, the ability of acquisition and transmission of viruses, among other aspects. The overall objective of the proposal is to expand the knowledge about "Brevipalpus phoenicis" in citrus orchards and coffee plantations, in order to establish strategies for pest management in Brazil. The specific objectives are: a) to study the morphological and morphometric variability in different populations (morphospecies) of Brevipalpus phoenicis from different host plants (with emphasis on citrus and coffee), b) study the population dynamics of different morphospecies B. phoenicis and the influence of weeds on these mites in a citrus orchard, c) evaluate the rate of population growth of different morphospecies B. phoenicis on various substrates, d) conduct studies of acquisition and transmission of viruses (CiLV-C) by mites B. phoenicis of different morphospecies (Types 1 and 2), e) carry out studies on the molecular characterization of different morphospecies B. phoenicis.

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