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Inoculation of Triatoma Virus (Dicistroviridae: Cripavirus) elicits a non-infective immune response in mice

Jailson F B Querido1, Jon Agirre23, Gerardo A Marti4, Diego M A Guérin235* and Marcelo Sousa Silva1*

Author Affiliations

1 Centre for Malaria and Tropical Diseases - Instituto de Higiene e Medicina Tropical - Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Lisboa, Portugal

2 Unidad de Biofísica (UBF, CSIC-UPV/EHU), Barrio Sarriena S/N, 48940, Leioa, Bizkaia, Spain

3 C Fundación Biofísica Bizkaia, Barrio Sarriena S/N, Leioa, Bizkaia, 48940, Spain

4 Centro de Estudios Parasitológicos y de Vectores (CEPAVE-CCT-La Plata-CONICET - UNLP) 2-584, La Plata, 1900, Argentina

5 Departamento de Bioquímica y Biologia Molecular, Universidad del País Vasco (UPV/EHU), 48940, Leioa, Spain

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Parasites & Vectors 2013, 6:66  doi:10.1186/1756-3305-6-66

Published: 15 March 2013



Dicistroviridae is a new family of small, non-enveloped, +ssRNA viruses pathogenic to both beneficial arthropods and insect pests. Little is known about the dicistrovirus replication mechanism or gene function, and any knowledge on these subjects comes mainly from comparisons with mammalian viruses from the Picornaviridae family. Due to its peculiar genome organization and characteristics of the per os viral transmission route, dicistroviruses make good candidates for use as biopesticides. Triatoma virus (TrV) is a pathogen of Triatoma infestans (Hemiptera: Reduviidae), one of the main vectors of the human trypanosomiasis disease called Chagas disease. TrV was postulated as a potential control agent against Chagas’ vectors. Although there is no evidence that TrV nor other dicistroviruses replicate in species outside the Insecta class, the innocuousness of these viruses in humans and animals needs to be ascertained.


In this study, RT-PCR and ELISA were used to detect the infectivity of this virus in Mus musculus BALB/c mice.


In this study we have observed that there is no significant difference in the ratio IgG2a/IgG1 in sera from animals inoculated with TrV when compared with non-inoculated animals or mice inoculated only with non-infective TrV protein capsids.


We conclude that, under our experimental conditions, TrV is unable to replicate in mice. This study constitutes the first test to evaluate the infectivity of a dicistrovirus in a vertebrate animal model.

Dicistroviridae; Triatoma virus; Chagas disease; triatomines; Trypanosoma cruzi; Mice immune response