Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Virology. 1988 Nov;167(1):242-50.

Alteration of a lepidopteran peritrophic membrane by baculoviruses and enhancement of viral infectivity.

Author information

  • 1Boyce Thompson Institute for Plant Research at Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14853.


The peritrophic membrane (PM), which lines the midgut of many insect species, has several functions. In particular, it may serve as a mechanical barrier to invading microorganisms. The protein composition of the PM from healthy and baculovirus-treated Trichoplusia ni (cabbage looper) larvae was analyzed by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. A specific interaction took place between baculoviruses and the PM of susceptible T. ni larvae. A 68-kDa glycoprotein of the PM disappeared within 15 min postinoculation with occlusion bodies of either Autographa californica nuclear polyhedrosis virus (AcMNPV) or T. ni nuclear polyhedrosis virus (TnSNPV). In contrast, inoculation of larvae with a T. ni granulosis virus (TnGV) resulted in the disappearance of three distinct major glycoproteins with molecular weights of 253, 194, and 123 kDa. PMs of virus-treated larvae were very fragile compared with those of untreated controls, indicative of a physical/chemical change in their structure. T. ni larval bioassays showed that a factor, present in the TnGV granulin or AcMNPV polyhedrin, enhanced the infectivity of AcMNPV. These data showed that a factor present in the occlusion bodies of three distinct baculoviruses can cause specific biochemical and structural changes in the PM. The biological significance of these observations in relation to increased larval infection is not known at this time.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Loading ...
    Support Center