Sharpshooters: a review of what moves Xylella fastidiosa

Damien Griessinger 403 views
Text - scientific article/review article


Sharpshooters (Hemiptera: Cicadellidae: Cicadellinae) and spittlebugs (Hemiptera: Aphrophoridae: Aphrophorinae) have a worldwide distribution and are often associated with many crops. Because the geographic range of sharpshooters and spittlebugs often overlaps with the range of the plant pathogenic bacterium Xylella fastidiosa, the importance of these groups of insects in spreading X. fastidiosa rises to the level of a major socioeconomic problem. Managing diseases caused by X. fastidiosa is challenging for several reasons. First, multiple sequence types of the pathogen have been identified, with sequence type affecting host plant specificity. Second, multiple vector species may be present in an agroecosystem, and the host range of vector species is often broad. Although multiple vector control options such as biological, chemical, physical and cultural controls have been described, disease control programs must take into account biological and ecological parameters of locally dominant X. fastidiosa sequence types and vector species to develop suitable control strategies. Our review demonstrates how fundamental principles of vector reproductive biology, behaviour, nutrition and population and community ecology have influenced research on insect vectors and provides insights into priority research areas.


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  • Aphrophoridae
  • Cicadellidae
  • Gonatocerus sp.
  • Hemiptera
  • Homalodisca vitripennis
  • Hymenoptera
  • Xylella fastidiosa


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