Get access

Genome size and ploidy of Thysanoptera


Correspondence: Alana Jacobson (during publication), Department of Entomology, North Carolina State University, Box 7630, NCSU, Raleigh, NC 27695, USA. Tel.: +1 575 640 7323; e-mail: or J. Spencer Johnston (post publication), Department of Entomology, Texas A&M University 2475, College Station, TX 77843, USA. Tel.: +1 979 845 8295; e-mail:


Flow cytometry was used to study the genome sizes and ploidy levels for four thrips species: Franklinothrips orizabensis Johansen (Thysanoptera: Aeolothripidae), Frankliniella occidentalis Pergande, Frankliniella fusca Hinds, and Thrips tabaci Lindeman (Thysanoptera: Thripidae). F. orizabensis males and females had 1C genome sizes of 426 Mb and 422 Mb, respectively. Male and female F. fusca had 1C genome sizes of 392 Mb and 409 Mb, whereas F. occidentalis males and females had smaller 1C genomes that were 345 Mb and 337 Mb, respectively. Male F. orizabensis, F. occidentalis and F. fusca were haploid and females diploid. Five isofemale lines of T. tabaci, initiated from parthenogenetic, thelytokous females and collected from different locations in North Carolina, were included in this study; no males were available. One isofemale line was diploid with a genome size of 1C = 310 Mb, and the other four had a mean genome size of 1C = 482 Mb, which is consistent with evidence from microsatellite data of diploidy and polyploidy, respectively, in these same five thelytokous lines. This is the first study to produce genome size estimates for thysanopteran species, and report polyploidy in T. tabaci populations.