Phylogenetic relationships of native and introduced Bemisia tabaci (Homoptera: Aleyrodidae) from China and India based on mtCOI DNA sequencing and host plant comparisons

Baoli Qiu, Susan A. Coats, Shunxiang Ren, Ali M. Idris, Caixia Xu, Judith K Brown

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Phylogenetic relationships for Bemisia tabaci were reconstructed by analysis of a -780 bp fragment of the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase I (mtCOI) gene with an emphasis on geographic range and distribution among eight eudicot plant families that are common hosts of B. tabaci worldwide to elucidate key phylogeographic linkages between populations extant in China (n=31) and India (n=34). Bootstrap values for the Maximum Parsimony tree were highly robust for all major nodes involving the major Asian clade, subgroups, and sister groups within, at 92%-100%. Between-clade distances for the Southeast Asia and three other major clades, e.g. from sub-Sahara Africa, North Africa-Mediterranean, and the Americas, were approximately >16% divergent. Two major Asian subgroups (I, II) were resolved, which represented populations indigenous to the region, comprising two (Ia, Ib) and five (II a-e) sister groups, respectively, which diverged by 11%. Two distinct populations from sunflower in Hyderabad grouped separately within the two Asian subgroups. All other populations grouped uniquely within Asian subgroup II or I. The B biotype was identified in 23 collections from China at 97.3%-99.5% nucleotide identity with B biotype reference sequences; it was not identified in collections from India. The majority of haplotypes were associated with 3-4 plant families, with one exception that for sister group IId (sesame, India), it might be monophagous. Thus, B. tabaci from the southeastern and near eastern regions of the Asian continent comprise of a large number of ancestral, richly divergent, mostly polyphagous populations. This region is therefore hypothesized to constitute an important Old World center of diversification for the B. tabaci complex, together with sub-Saharan Africa.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)645-654
Number of pages10
JournalProgress in Natural Science
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2007



  • Bemisia tabaci complex
  • Cytochrome oxidase I
  • Host range
  • Phylogenetic relationship

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

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