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Molecular markers for identification of the hyperparasitoids Dendrocerus carpenteri and Alloxysta xanthopsis in Lysiphlebus testaceipes parasitizing cereal aphids

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Polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based molecular markers have been developed to detect the presence of primary parasitoids in cereal aphids and used to estimate primary parasitism rates. However, the presence of secondary parasitoids (hyperparasitoids) may lead to underestimates of primary parasitism rates based on PCR markers. This is because even though they kill the primary parasitoid, it's DNA can still be amplified, leading to an erroneous interpretation of a positive result. Another issue with secondary parasitoids is that adults are extremely difficult to identify using morphological characters. Therefore, we developed species-specific molecular markers to detect hyperparasitoids. A 16S ribosomal RNA mitochondrial gene fragment was amplified by PCR and sequenced from two secondary parasitoid species, Dendrocerus carpenteri (Curtis) (Hymenoptera: Megaspilidae) and Alloxysta xanthopsis (Ashmead) (Hymenoptera: Charipidae), four geographic isolates of the primary parasitoid, Lysiphlebus testaceipes (Cresson) (Hymenoptera: Braconidae), and six aphid species common to cereal crops. Species-specific PCR primers were designed for each insect on the basis of these 16S rRNA gene sequences. Amplification of template DNA, followed by agarose gel electrophoresis, successfully distinguished D. carpenteri and A. xanthopsis from all four isolates of L. testaceipes and all six cereal aphid species in this laboratory test.
Chen, Y. , Pike, K.S. , Greenstone, M.H. , Shufran, K.A.
Includes references
BioControl 2006 Apr., v. 51, no. 2
Journal Articles, USDA Authors, Peer-Reviewed
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