alexa Phylogenetic relationships of three new microsporidian isolates from the silkworm, Bombyx mori.
Genetics & Molecular Biology

Genetics & Molecular Biology

Cloning & Transgenesis

Author(s): Nageswara Rao S, Muthulakshmi M, Kanginakudru S, Nagaraju J

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Abstract The pathogenicity, mode of transmission, tissue specificity of infection and the small subunit rRNA (SSU-rRNA) gene sequences of the three new microsporidian isolates from the silkworm Bombyx mori were studied. Out of the three, NIK-2r revealed life cycle features and SSU-rRNA gene sequence similar to Nosema bombycis, suggesting that it is N. bombycis. The other two, NIK-4m and NIK-3h, differed from each other as well as from N. bombycis. NIK-4m was highly pathogenic and did not show any vertical transmission, in accordance with the apparent lack of gonadal infection, whereas NIK-3h was less pathogenic and vertical transmission was not detected but could not be excluded. Phylogenetic analysis based on SSU-rRNA gene sequence placed NIK-3h and NIK-4m in a distinct clade that included almost all the Vairimorpha species and Nosema species that infect lepidopteran and non-lepidopteran hosts, while NIK-2r was included in a clade containing almost all the Nosema isolates that infect only lepidopteran hosts. Thus, we have presented molecular evidence that one of the three isolates is in fact the type species N. bombycis, while the other two isolates are Vairimorpha spp. There was distinct separation of microsporidian isolates infecting only lepidopteran hosts and those infecting lepidopteran and non-lepidopteran hosts, reflecting possible co-evolution of hosts and microsporidian isolates. This article was published in J Invertebr Pathol and referenced in Cloning & Transgenesis

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