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Volume 57, Issue 4


Molecular characterization and phylogenetic relationships among microsporidian isolates infecting silkworm, Bombyx mori using small subunit rRNA (SSU-rRNA) gene sequence analysis

B. Nath
  • Molecular Pathology Division, Seribiotech Research Laboratory, Central Silk Board, CSB Campus, Carmelram Post, Kodathi, Bangalore, 560035, Karnataka, India
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/ S. Gupta
  • Silkworm Pathology Department, Central Sericultural Research and Training Institute, Central Silk Board, Berhampore, 742101, West Bengal, India
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/ A. Bajpai
  • Silkworm Pathology Department, Central Sericultural Research and Training Institute, Central Silk Board, Berhampore, 742101, West Bengal, India
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Published Online: 2012-11-06 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/s11686-012-0051-4


The life cycle, spore morphology, pathogenicity, tissue specificity, mode of transmission and small subunit rRNA (SSU-rRNA) gene sequence analysis of the five new microsporidian isolates viz., NIWB-11bp, NIWB-12n, NIWB-13md, NIWB-14b and NIWB-15mb identified from the silkworm, Bombyx mori have been studied along with type species, NIK-1s_mys. The life cycle of the microsporidians identified exhibited the sequential developmental cycles that are similar to the general developmental cycle of the genus, Nosema. The spores showed considerable variations in their shape, length and width. The pathogenicity observed was dose-dependent and differed from each of the microsporidian isolates; the NIWB-15mb was found to be more virulent than other isolates. All of the microsporidians were found to infect most of the tissues examined and showed gonadal infection and transovarial transmission in the infected silkworms. SSU-rRNA sequence based phylogenetic tree placed NIWB-14b, NIWB-12n and NIWB-11bp in a separate branch along with other Nosema species and Nosema bombycis; while NIWB-15mb and NIWB-13md together formed another cluster along with other Nosema species. NIK-1s_mys revealed a signature sequence similar to standard type species, N. bombycis, indicating that NIK-1s_mys is similar to N. bombycis. Based on phylogenetic relationships, branch length information based on genetic distance and nucleotide differences, we conclude that the microsporidian isolates identified are distinctly different from the other known species and belonging to the genus, Nosema. This SSU-rRNA gene sequence analysis method is found to be more useful approach in detecting different and closely related microsporidians of this economically important domestic insect.

Keywords: Microsporidia; Nosema; pebrine; disporoblastic development; silkworm; SSU-rRNA

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Published Online: 2012-11-06

Published in Print: 2012-12-01

Citation Information: Acta Parasitologica, Volume 57, Issue 4, Pages 342–353, ISSN (Online) 1896-1851, ISSN (Print) 1230-2821, DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/s11686-012-0051-4.

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