posted on Sep, 7 2007 @ 10:40 AM
This is quite interesting because I told my wife about 3 months ago that I wouldn't be surprised if they found a viral culprit. Seeing as how some
colonies have been decimated it fits the pattern for mass viral infections in their population. IAPV has not yet been classified according to its
Genus, so I am unfamiliar with most of the current research concerning this particular virus. However, the virus has been classified as belonging to
the family of Dicistroviridae, which does help in trying to understand how the virus can destroy a good percentage of the bees. Dicistroviridae are
positive sense single stranded RNA (ssRNA) based viruses that are generally quite similar to one another in the sense that they all have a
non-enveloped capsid with icosahedral symmetry and 3 structural proteins on the capsid (compared to the 5 found on most insect viruses).
This family of viruses are so new I'll be honest when I say I know little about them and how they are transmitted. Nevertheless, because they are
RNA based it does lend some credence to their ability to kill off populations of insects. RNA based viruses usually replicate much faster than their
DNA based counterparts, and this could account for why so many bees have apparently died off. I'm going to do a little more research and find out
what I can about this virus and it's capability to infect mass populations...should be quite interesting.