Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Melon growers: Combating cucurbit yellow stunting disorder virus

Date:
March 9, 2011
Source:
USDA/Agricultural Research Service
Summary:
Scientists are working to give melon growers some relief from cucurbit yellow stunting disorder virus, or CYSDV.

Melon plant with early symptoms of cucurbit yellow stunting disease.
Credit: Photo by William Wintermantel

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists are working to give melon growers some relief from cucurbit yellow stunting disorder virus, or CYSDV.

In 2006, Agricultural Research Service (ARS) plant pathologist Bill Wintermantel with the U.S. Agricultural Research Station in Salinas, Calif., and university colleagues identified the plant disease that growers in California's Imperial Valley and nearby Yuma, Ariz., noticed was spreading through their cucurbit fields. Cucurbit crops affected included cantaloupe and honeydew melons.

ARS is USDA's principal intramural scientific research agency, and this research supports the USDA priority of promoting international food security.

CYSDV, a whitefly-transmitted virus originally from the Middle East, was identified by Wintermantel and colleagues in the melon-production region of California, Arizona, and Sonora, Mexico, in the fall of 2006. They also identified CYSDV a year later in Florida. Though it remains unclear how the virus spread to California and Florida, virus samples taken from both regions indicate they are essentially genetically identical to one another, according to Wintermantel.

In an effort to assist growers, ARS horticulturist and research leader Jim McCreight at Salinas is working to develop CYSDV-resistant melons. McCreight describes as serendipitous his discovery in 2006 of resistance to CYSDV in an exotic, salad-type melon from India that was being tested for resistance to another disease.

After screening more than 400 melon accessions from India in the field, McCreight found a few plants in several other vegetable-type melons from India that show promise for resistance to the virus. Work continues on developing a resistant melon that growers in the southwestern United States could plant.

McCreight's field tests showed that disease resistance can only be effective in the desert southwest when whitefly populations are controlled. According to McCreight, hundreds of whiteflies constantly feeding on the plants assure high frequency of infection by the virus. Continued feeding by the whiteflies, particularly in summer-planted melons grown in high temperatures (more than 100 degrees Fahrenheit in the daytime), further weakens the plants. The result is often complete loss of fruit yield and quality or plant death.

Melons from plants infected with CYSDV may appear normal, but often have reduced sugar levels, resulting in poor marketability. The virus is spread by the whitefly, Bemisia tabaci, a small, sap-sucking insect that carries the virus from plant-to-plant as it feeds.

Several local weeds and important alternate crops such as alfalfa and lettuce were identified as hosts of CYSDV. However, unlike cucurbits, these newly identified crop hosts were symptomless carriers of the virus and their yield was unaffected. Wintermantel and his colleagues found the virus is capable of infecting plants in seven plant families in addition to the Cucurbitaceae family.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by USDA/Agricultural Research Service. The original article was written by Sharon Durham. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

USDA/Agricultural Research Service. "Melon growers: Combating cucurbit yellow stunting disorder virus." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 March 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110309112904.htm>.
USDA/Agricultural Research Service. (2011, March 9). Melon growers: Combating cucurbit yellow stunting disorder virus. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110309112904.htm
USDA/Agricultural Research Service. "Melon growers: Combating cucurbit yellow stunting disorder virus." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110309112904.htm (accessed September 22, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Monday, September 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: San Diego Zoo Welcomes Cheetah Cubs

Raw: San Diego Zoo Welcomes Cheetah Cubs

AP (Sep. 20, 2014) The San Diego Zoo has welcomed two Cheetah cubs to its Safari Park. The nearly three-week-old female cubs are being hand fed and are receiving around the clock care. (Sept. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Chocolate Museum Opens in Brussels

Chocolate Museum Opens in Brussels

AFP (Sep. 19, 2014) Considered a "national heritage" in Belgium, chocolate now has a new museum in Brussels. In a former chocolate factory, visitors to the permanent exhibition spaces, workshops and tastings can discover derivatives of the cocoa bean. Duration: 01:00 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) The study found elderly people are much more likely to become susceptible to infection than younger adults going though a similar situation. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

AP (Sep. 19, 2014) A federal jury has convicted three people in connection with an outbreak of salmonella poisoning five years ago that sickened hundreds of people and was linked to a number of deaths. (Sept. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins