The immunological and developmental effects of bracoviruses (BVs) from three parasitoids in the genus Microplitis (Braconidae: Microgastrinae) were compared in the hosts Pseudoplusia includens and Heliothis virescens (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae). Southern blotting experiments indicated that viral DNAs from Microplitis demolitor bracovirus (MdBV) cross-hybridized with viral DNAs from Microplitis croceipes bracovirus (McBV) and Microplitis mediator bracovirus (MmBV) under conditions of high stringency. Injection of calyx fluid plus venom from each parasitoid species dose-dependently delayed development of P. includens and H. virescens. Each virus also inhibited pupation of P. includens but not H. virescens. In situ hybridization experiments indicated that MdBV and McBV persistently infect hemocytes in both hosts while MmBV persistently infects hemocytes in P. includens but not H. virescens. While MdBV infection induced a loss of adhesion by most plasmatocytes, McBV and MmBV infection induced a loss of adhesion in less than 50% of cells. Cross-protection experiments indicated that calyx fluid plus venom from one species usually protected progeny of another species from encapsulation but did not always promote successful development [KEYWORDS: Polydnavirus; Parasite; Encapsulation; Hemocytes; Development]
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Insect Physiology
Journal publication date2003

ID: 192604