Anatomy of accessory salivary glands of the whitefly Bemisia tabaci (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) and correlations to begomovirus transmission

Joseph M. Cicero, Judith K Brown

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11 Scopus citations


Visualization of dissected accessory salivary glands (ASGs) of the whitefly Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius) (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) by light microscopy (LM) revealed three distinctive toluidine blue O stain profiles. Considered morphotypes, the three profiles are hypothesized to represent stages of a salivation cycle, wherein contents are cyclically depleted and subsequently regenerated as needed for feeding. When whiteflies were repeatedly interrupted during their initial feeding behaviors, and then ASGs were dissected, a fourth stain profile was revealed. These observations are therefore relevant to the different mechanisms involved in whitefly-mediated virus transmission to plants. Stain techniques involved in transmission electron microscopy of extirpated and nonextirpated ASGs reveal entirely different profiles that cannot yet be correlated to LM findings. The midgut of B. tabaci is capable of transposing its location from the abdomen to the thorax and can come into direct contact with the ASGs. This finding opens new lines of thought in the potential for interaction between the two, such as purging of excess water and waste, and virus transmission.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)280-286
Number of pages7
JournalAnnals of the Entomological Society of America
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2011



  • Accessory salivary gland
  • circulative transmission
  • cyclical salivation
  • virus vector
  • whitefly

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Insect Science

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