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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Managing Diseases and Pests of Honey Bees to Improve Queen and Colony Health Title: A Review of Bee Virology Progress

Authors
item Zhang, Xuan -
item Chen, Yanping
item He, Shaoyu -

Submitted to: Review Article
Publication Type: Review Article
Publication Acceptance Date: March 15, 2012
Publication Date: July 15, 2012
Citation: Zhang, X., Chen, Y., He, S. 2012. A review of bee virology progress. Chinese Journal of Applied Entomology. 49(5):1095-1116.

Technical Abstract: Honey bees play a vital role in global food production and sustainable ecological systems. However, honey bee colony losses at the rate of 20%-30% per year in recent years have been devastating to the agricultural industry and ecosystem that rely on honey bees for pollination. Among biotic and abiotic factors that are suspected to be responsible for the killing of the bees, viruses are frequently implicated in honey bee colony losses, especially when the colonies are infested with the parasitic mite Varroa destructor, the most serious pest of honey bees globally. Viruses have also been linked to honey bee Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD), a mysterious malady that wiped out 50 to 90% of managed bee colonies in the U.S. during the winter of 2006-2007. It has therefore become urgent to elucidate the disease mechanisms of the viruses and to develop strategies to control viral pathogenesis and disease spread in honey bees. This chapter summarizes the current efforts and recent advances in honey bee virus research regarding transmission, epidemiology, replication and pathogenesis of viral infection. The future research and development leading to the prevention, detection, diagnosis, and treatment of diseases caused by viruses are also discussed in detail. The information included in this chapter can be used by scientists and apiary inspectors to monitor honey bee colonies for viruses to prevent the spread of disease.

Last Modified: 10/22/2014