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Date of Award

Spring 2018


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Document Type

Thesis: EWU Only

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS) in Biology




The Diachasmimorpha longicaudata entomopoxvirus (DlEPV) is a presently unclassified, insect-specific poxvirus. The virus was first identified in the accessory poison gland apparatus of a female parasitoid wasp, D. longicaudata. The wasp apparently injects DlEPV into host fly larvae along with the egg during oviposition. Although the effect of the presence of DlEPV on wasp larvae survival within the host is unknown, the virus does appear to disrupt haemocyte encapsulation response. The DlEPV genome has not yet been fully characterized. A total of nineteen genes have been identified (10 of known functions, 9 of unknown) and the expected genome size is 290—300 kilobase pairs (kbp). We subjected DlEPV DNA to sequencing and structural analysis. We found all 19 known DlEPV genes, identified an additional 48 DlEPV genes; thus more than doubling the number of know DlEPV genes. DlEPV open reading frames (ORFs) were found to have significant homology to both essential and nonessential poxvirus genes. We also report the presence of a putative NAD+-dependent DNA ligase, only the second example of this gene from a virus. DlEPV clearly is a poxvirus. However, it likely needs to be classified into its own genus as it is quite different to other EPVs.