Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Genetic detection of Lake Sinai Virus in honey bees (Apis mellifera) and other insects

July 21, 2020

Lake Sinai Viruses (LSV) are common ribonucleic acid (RNA) viruses of honey bees (Apis mellifera) that frequently reach high abundance but are not linked to overt disease. LSVs are genetically heterogeneous and collectively widespread, but despite frequent detection in surveys, the ecological and geographic factors structuring their distribution in A. mellifera are not understood. Even less is known about their distribution in other species. Better understanding of LSV prevalence and ecology have been hampered by high sequence diversity within the LSV clade. We developed a new genetic assay that detects all currently known lineages. We also performed pilot metagenetic sequencing to quantify the diversity of LSV sequences. The resulting data are summarized herein.