Molecular and biological characterization of deformed wing virus of honeybees (Apis mellifera L.)

Gaetana Lanzi, Joachim R. De Miranda, Maria Beatrice Boniotti, Craig E. Cameron, Antonio Lavazza, Lorenzo Capucci, Scott M. Camazine, Cesare Rossi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

257 Scopus citations


Deformed wing virus (DWV) of honeybees (Apis mellifera) is closely associated with characteristic wing deformities, abdominal bloating, paralysis, and rapid mortality of emerging adult bees. The virus was purified from diseased insects, and its genome was cloned and sequenced. The genomic RNA of DWV is 10,140 nucleotides in length and contains a single large open reading frame encoding a 328-kDa polyprotein. The coding sequence is flanked by a 1,144-nucleotide 5′ nontranslated leader sequence and a 317-nucleotide 3′ nontranslated region, followed by a poly(A) tail. The three major structural proteins, VP1 (44 RDa), VP2 (32 kDa), and VP3 (28 kDa), were identified, and their genes were mapped to the N-terminal section of the polyprotein. The C-terminal part of the polyprotein contains sequence motifs typical of well-characterized picornavirus nonstructural proteins: an RNA helicase, a chymotrypsin-like 3C protease, and an RNA-dependent RNA polymerase. The genome organization, capsid morphology, and sequence comparison data indicate that DWV is a member of the recently established genus Iflavirus.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4998-5009
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of virology
Issue number10
StatePublished - May 2006

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Insect Science
  • Virology


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