Nymphs and alates of aphid Nasonovia ribisnigri (Mosley) (Homoptera: Aphididae) were tested on 10 lettuce cultivars with N. ribisnigri resistance gene Nr and 18 cultivars without the resistance gene in various bioassays. Bioassays used whole plants, leaf discs, or leaf cages to determine susceptibility of commercial lettuce cultivars to N. ribisnigri infestation and to evaluate screening methods for breeding lettuce resistance to N. ribisnigri. Resistant and susceptible plants were separated in 3 d when using whole plant bioassays. Long-term (≥7 d) no-choice tests using leaf cages or whole plants resulted in no survival of N. ribisnigri on resistant plants, indicating great promise of the Nr gene for management of N. ribisnigri. Effective screening was achieved in both no-choice tests where resistant or susceptible intact plants were tested separately in groups or individually and in choice tests where susceptible and resistant plants were intermixed. Leaf discs bioassays were not suitable for resistance screening. All lettuce cultivars without the resistance gene were suitable hosts for N. ribisnigri, indicating the great importance of this pest to lettuce production and the urgency in developing resistant lettuce cultivars to manage N. ribisnigri.
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Vol. 99 • No. 3