A landscape genetic analysis of important agricultural pest species in Tunisia: The whitefly Bemisia tabaci

Type Article
Date 2017-10
Language English
Author(s) Ben Abdelkrim Ahmed1, 2, Hattab Tarek3, Fakhfakh Hatem1, 4, Belkadhi Mohamed Sadok5, Gorsane Faten1, 4
Affiliation(s) 1 : Univ Tunis El Manar, Fac Sci Tunis, Lab Genet Mol Immunol & Biotechnol, Tunis, Tunisia.
2 : Univ Paris Diderot, Sorbonne Paris Cite, CNRS UMR 7592, Inst Jacques Monod, Paris, France.
3 : IFREMER, UMR MARBEC 248, Inst Francais Rech Exploitat Mer, Ave Jean Monnet CS, Sete, France.
4 : Univ Carthage, Fac Sci Bizerte, Bizerte, Tunisia.
5 : Ctr Tech Cultures Protegees & Geotherm Gabes, Gabes, Tunisia.
Source Plos One (1932-6203) (Public Library Science), 2017-10 , Vol. 12 , N. 10 , P. e0185724 (1-20)
DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0185724
WOS© Times Cited 7

Combining landscape ecology and genetics provides an excellent framework to appreciate pest population dynamics and dispersal. The genetic architectures of many species are always shaped by environmental constraints. Because little is known about the ecological and genetic traits of Tunisian whitefly populations, the main objective of this work is to highlight patterns of biodiversity, genetic structure and migration routes of this pest. We used nuclear microsatellite loci to analyze B. tabaci populations collected from various agricultural areas across the country and we determine their biotype status. Molecular data were subsequently interpreted in an ecological context supplied from a species distribution model to infer habitat suitability and hereafter the potential connection paths between sampling localities. An analysis of landscape resistance to B. tabaci genetic flow was thus applied to take into account habitat suitability, genetic relatedness and functional connectivity of habitats within a varied landscape matrix. We shed light on the occurrence of three geographically delineated genetic groups with high levels of genetic differentiation within each of them. Potential migration corridors of this pest were then established providing significant advances toward the understanding of genetic features and the dynamic dispersal of this pest. This study supports the hypothesis of a long-distance dispersal of B. tabaci followed by infrequent long-term isolations. The Inference of population sources and colonization routes is critical for the design and implementation of accurate management strategies against this pest.

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Publisher's official version 20 3 MB Open access
S1 Fig. The PCR- RFLP (TaqI) of a fragment of the mitochondrial gene (mtCOI). 1 142 KB Open access
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