The Replication of Bluetongue Virus in Culicoides Vectors

  • P. S. Mellor
Part of the Current Topics in Microbiology and Immunology book series (CT MICROBIOLOGY, volume 162)

Abstract

Bluetongue virus (BTV) has long been known to be transmitted biologically by certain species of biting midge belonging to the genus Culicoides (Latreille). Du Toit (1944) in South Africa was the first to implicate a Culicoides species in the transmission of this virus when he showed that C. imicola (pallidipennis) was able to transmit bluetongue from infected to susceptible sheep. Since that time numerous authors have confirmed his observations (Walker and Davies 1971; Braverman and Galun 1973; Braverman et al. 1981, 1985; Mellor et al. 1984a). However, although there are well over 1000 species of Culicoides in the world (Boorman 1988), only 17 have been connected with BTV and to date only six, C. variipennis, C. imicola, C. fulvus, C. actoni, C. wadai and C. nubeculosus, have been proven to transmit the virus (Table 1). This number may soon be increased to eight since on the basis of epidemiological evidence and virus isolations it is
Table 1

Field and laboratory BTV infections of Culicoides

Subgenus

Species

Virus isolation

Laboratory infection

Transmission

Avaritia

C. actoni

+

+

 

C. brevipalpis

+

 

C. brevitarsis

+

+

 

C. fulvus

+

+

+

 

C. imicola

+

+

+

 

C. obsoletus

+

 

C. tororoensis

+

 

C. wadai

+

+

Culicoides

C. peregrinus

±

Diphaeomia

C. debilipalpis

+

Hoffmania

C. insignis

+

 

C. milnei

+

-

-

 

C. venustus

+

Monoculicoides

C. variipennis

+

+

+

 

C. nubeculosus

+

+

Oecacta

C. oxytoma

+

Pulicaris

C. impunctatus

±

likely that C. insignis and C. brevitarsis will also prove to be competent BTV vectors (Greiner et al. 1985; Standfast et al. 1985). Although some of the remaining species of Culicoides may eventually be shown to be fully competent BTV vectors most species will be refractory to infection. Why this should be is not yet entirely clear, but it is known that the mechanism or mechanisms controlling the oral infection of Culicoides with BTV operate chiefly at the level of the mid-gut wall (Jennings and Mellor 1988), a single layer of cells of epithelial origin supported by a basement lamina (Hardy et al. 1983; Megahed 1956).

Keywords

Sugar Europe Trypsin Turkey Luminal 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag · Berlin Heidelberg 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • P. S. Mellor
    • 1
  1. 1.AFRC Institute for Animal HealthPirbright LaboratorySurreyUK

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