Protocols for investigating the host-tissue distribution, transmission-mode, and effect on the host fitness of a densovirus in the cotton bollworm

Xianming Yang, Pengjun Xu, Robert I. Graham, He Yuan, Kongming Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article


Many novel viruses have been discovered in animal hosts using next-generation sequencing technologies. Previously, we reported a mutualistic virus, Helicoverpa armigera densovirus (HaDV2), in a lepidopteran species, the cotton bollworm, Helicoverpa armigera (Hubner). Here, we describe the protocols that are currently used to study the effect of HaDV2 on its host. First, we establish a HaDV2-free cotton bollworm colony from a single breeding pair. Then, we orally inoculate some neonate larval offspring with HaDV2-containing filtered liquid to produce two colonies with the same genetic background: one HaDV2-infected, the other uninfected. A protocol to compare life table parameters (e.g., larval, pupal, and adult periods and fecundity) between the HaDV2-infected and -uninfected individuals is also presented, as are the protocols for determining the host-tissue distribution and transmission efficiency of HaDV2. These protocols would also be suitable for investigating the effects of other orally transmitted viruses on their insect hosts, lepidopteran hosts in particular.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Visualized Experiments
Issue number122
Publication statusPublished - 12 Apr 2017
Externally publishedYes



  • Bioassays
  • Cotton bollworm
  • Densovirus
  • Horizontal transmission
  • Immunology
  • Interaction
  • Issue 122
  • Tissue distribution
  • Vertical transmission

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