Microarray analysis of tomato plants exposed to the nonviruliferous or viruliferous whitefly vector harboring pepper golden mosaic virus

Richard O. Musser, Sue M. Hum-Musser, Matthew Gallucci, Brittany DesRochers, Judith K. Brown

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Plants are routinely exposed to biotic and abiotic stresses to which they have evolved by synthesizing constitutive and induced defense compounds. Induced defense compounds are usually made, initially, at low levels; however, following further stimulation by specific kinds of biotic and abiotic stresses, they can be synthesized in relatively large amounts to abate the particular stress. cDNA microarray hybridization was used to identify an array of genes that were differentially expressed in tomato plants 15 d after they were exposed to feeding by nonviruliferous whiteflies or by viruliferous whiteflies carrying Pepper golden mosaic virus (PepGMV) (Begomovirus, Geminiviridae). Tomato plants inoculated by viruliferous whiteflies developed symptoms characteristic of PepGMV, whereas plants exposed to nonviruliferous whitefly feeding or nonwounded (negative) control plants exhibited no disease symptoms. The microarray analysis yielded over 290 spotted probes, with significantly altered expression of 161 putative annotated gene targets, and 129 spotted probes of unknown identities. The majority of the differentially regulated "known" genes were associated with the plants exposed to viruliferous compared with nonviruliferous whitefly feeding. Overall, significant differences in gene expression were represented by major physiological functions including defense-, pathogen-, photosynthesis-, and signaling-related responses and were similar to genes identified for other insect-plant systems. Viruliferous whitefly-stimulated gene expression was validated by real-Time quantitative polymerase chain reaction of selected, representative candidate genes (messenger RNA): Arginase, dehydrin, pathogenesis-related proteins 1 and-4, polyphenol oxidase, and several protease inhibitors. This is the first comparative profiling of the expression of tomato plants portraying different responses to biotic stress induced by viruliferous whitefly feeding (with resultant virus infection) compared with whitefly feeding only and negative control nonwounded plants exposed to neither. These results may be applicable to many other plant-insect-pathogen system interactions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Insect Science
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014


  • Begomovirus
  • Bemisia Tabaci
  • Biotic Stress
  • Ethylene
  • Geminiviridae

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Insect Science


Dive into the research topics of 'Microarray analysis of tomato plants exposed to the nonviruliferous or viruliferous whitefly vector harboring pepper golden mosaic virus'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this