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Viruses 2019, 11(2), 94; https://doi.org/10.3390/v11020094

New Viruses from the Ectoparasite Mite Varroa destructor Infesting Apis mellifera and Apis cerana

Department of Entomology, The Robert H. Smith Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Environment, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Rehovot 76100, Israel
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Received: 1 November 2018 / Revised: 18 January 2019 / Accepted: 22 January 2019 / Published: 24 January 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Insect Viruses)
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Abstract

Varroa destructor is an ectoparasitic mite of Asian or Eastern honeybees Apis cerana (A. cerana) which has become a serious threat to European subspecies of Western honeybees Apis mellifera (A. mellifera) within the last century. V. destructor and its vectored honeybee viruses became serious threats for colony survival. This is a short period for pathogen- and host-populations to adapt. To look for possible variation in the composition of viral populations we performed RNA metagenomic analysis of the Western honeybee subspecies A. m. ligustica, A. m. syriaca, A. m. intermissa, and A. cerana and their respective V. destructor mites. The analysis revealed two novel viruses: Varroa orthomyxovirus-1 (VOV-1) in A. mellifera and V. destructor and a Hubei like-virga virus-14 homolog in V. destructor. VOV-1 was more prevalent in V. destructor than in A. mellifera and we found evidence for viral replication in both hosts. Interestingly, we found differences in viral loads of A. cerana and their V. destructor, A. m. intermissa, and its V. destructor showed partial similarity, while A. m. ligustica and A. m. syriaca and their varroa where very similar. Deformed wing virus exhibited 82.20%, 99.20%, 97.90%, and 0.76% of total viral reads in A. m. ligustica, A. m. syriaca, A. m. intermissa, and A. cerana, respectively. This is the first report of a complete segmented-single-stranded negative-sense RNA virus genome in honeybees and V. destructor mites. View Full-Text
Keywords: honeybee subspecies; Varroa destructor; metagenomics analysis; viruses honeybee subspecies; Varroa destructor; metagenomics analysis; viruses
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Levin, S.; Sela, N.; Erez, T.; Nestel, D.; Pettis, J.; Neumann, P.; Chejanovsky, N. New Viruses from the Ectoparasite Mite Varroa destructor Infesting Apis mellifera and Apis cerana. Viruses 2019, 11, 94.

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