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Picorna-Like Virus Discovered in Wild Lime Psyllid Leuronota fagarae Burckhardt (Hemiptera: Psylloidea)
* 1, 2 , * 2 , 3 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 , 7 , 8 , * 3
1  ORISE participant, DOE/USDA, Fort Pierce, FL 34945, USA.
2  USDA, ARS, 2001 South Rock Road, Fort Pierce, FL 34945, USA.
3  University of Florida, IFAS, Department of Plant Pathology, Indian River Research and Education Center, 2199 South Rock Road, Fort Pierce, FL 34945, USA.
4  Dept. Cell & Mol. Biol., Florida State University,319 Stadium Drive, Tallahassee, FL 32306-4295
5  HRM, Ft. Pierce, FL, 34949, USA
6  University of the West Indies, Kingston, Jamaica
7  University of Arizona, School of Plant Sciences, Tuscon, AZ
8  University of Florida, Southwest Florida Research and Education Center (SWFREC), 2685 SR 29 North Immokalee, FL 34142. USA.
Academic Editor: Mihailo Jelić


As of March 2021, the Family: Picornaviridae contained 158 species grouped into 68 different genera. We report the identification of a new Picornaviridae-like viral species isolated from the Wild Lime Psyllid (WLP), Leuronota fagarae. Extraction and sequencing of nucleic acid from WLP adult salivary glands identified a 5554 nt sequence with 52.75% identity to Diaphorina citri (Asian Citrus Psyllid) picorna-like virus polyprotein and 59.61% identity to Bemisia tabaci (Silverleaf Whitefly) polyprotein, NCBI BlastX and Blastp analysis. Sequence comparisons of amino acids and nucleotides showed consistent similarity and motifs with picorna-like virus polyproteins across 8 known species, having significant E-values of 7e-116 or less. Polyproteins are around 2100-2400 in length, are cleaved into multiple active peptides to allow for viral replication. Phylogenetic comparisons using amino acid and nucleic acid polyprotein sequences shows a diverse radiant group of insect hosts. The discovery of a picorna-like virus in WLP that is related to the D. citri Picorna-like virus, whose niches overlap, may provide new insight into management of psyllid vectors that transmit crop pathogens, like the bacterium causing Huanglongbing in citrus.

Keywords: Huanglongbing; Picornaviridae; Diaphorina citri, Iflaviridae; polyprotein, RdRp, SNPs