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Virus Genes. 2013 Apr;46(2):362-8. doi: 10.1007/s11262-012-0859-x. Epub 2012 Dec 14.

Phylogenetic analysis of black queen cell virus genotypes in South Korea.

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Parasitology and Insect Disease Research Laboratory, Animal, Plant and Fisheries Quarantine and Inspection Agency, 480 Anyang 6 dong, Anyang 420-480, South Korea.


The black queen cell virus (BQCV), a picorna-like honeybee virus, was first isolated from queen larvae and pupae of honeybees found dead in their cells. BQCV is the most common cause of death in queen larvae. Phylogenetic analysis of two Apis cerana and three Apis mellifera BQCV genotypes collected from honeybee colonies in different regions of South Korea, central European BQCV genotypes, and a South African BQCV reference genotype was performed on a partial helicase enzyme coding region (ORF1) and a partial structural polypeptide coding region (ORF2). The phylogeny based on the ORF2 region showed clustering of all the Korean genotypes corresponding to their geographic origin, with the exception of Korean Am str3 which showed more similarity to the central European and the South African reference genotype. However, the ORF1-based tree exhibited a different distribution of the Korean strains, in which A. cerana isolates formed one cluster and all A. mellifera isolates formed a separate cluster. The RT-PCR assay described in this study is a sensitive and reliable method for the detection and classification of BQCV strains from various regions of Korea. BQCV infection is present in both A. cerana and A. mellifera colonies. With this in mind, the present study examined the transmission of honeybee BQCV infections between A. cerana and A. mellifera.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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