Wednesday, 20 November 2002

This presentation is part of : Display Presentations, Section A. Systematics, Morphology, and Evolution

Phylogenetic relationships of Wolbachia in a guild of wasps parasitic on filth flies (Diptera: Muscidae)

George K. Kyei-Poku, Kevin D. Floate, Bernhard Benkel, and Mark S. Goettel. Lethbridge Research Centre, Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada, P.O. Box 3000, 5403 - 1st Avenue South, Lethbridge, AB, Canada

Wolbachia are bacteria that occur in more than 20 percent of arthropod species. Infections can alter host reproduction via the feminization of genetic males, male killing, induction of thelytokous parthenogenesis, and cytoplasmic incompatibility. Hence, Wolbachia is of great interest as a method to reduce populations of pest insects or, conversely, to increase populations of beneficial insects. We used PCR analyses to determine the prevalence and type (A or B) of Wolbachia in a guild of beneficial wasps (Hymenoptera: Pteromalidae) parasitic on filth flies (Diptera: Muscidae). Tests were performed on wasps from 53 populations representing 20 species from 7 countries. Wolbachia was detected in 58% of the species. Type-A Wolbachia was detected in each of the infected species, with a double infection of Type-A and-B detected in two species. No species were infected solely with Type-B Wolbachia. A phylogenetic analysis was done using DNA sequences from wsp and ftsZ genes to assess the 'relatedness' of Wolbachia strains in this group of parasitoids.

Species 1: Diptera Muscidae
Species 2: Hymenoptera Pteromalidae
Keywords: Wolbachia, Phylogenetics

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