Characterization of a novel alphabaculovirus isolated from the Southern armyworm, Spodoptera eridania (Cramer, 1782) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) and the evolution of odv-e66, a bacterium-acquired baculoviral chondroitinase gene.
The Southern armyworm Spodoptera eridania (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) is native to the American tropics and a polyphagous pest of several crops. Here we characterized a novel alphabaculovirus isolated from S. eridania, isolate Spodoptera eridania nucleopolyhedrivurus CNPSo-165 (SperNPV-CNPSo-165). SperNPV-CNPSo-165 occlusion bodies were found to be polyhedral and to contain virions with multiple nucleocapsids. The virus was lethal to S. eridania and S. albula but not to S. frugiperda. The SperNPV-CNPSo-165 genome was 137.373 bp in size with a G + C content of 42.8%. We annotated 151 ORFs with 16 ORFs unique among baculoviruses. Phylogenetic inference indicated that this virus was closely related to the most recent common ancestor of other Spodoptera-isolated viruses.