Microsporidian disease in beneficial insects

Leellen F. Solter

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Entomopathogenic microsporidia produce chronic infections that often do not produce obvious symptoms.This group of primary pathogens is, therefore, best known in managed insects or in wellstudied pest populations. Microsporidiosis of domesticated insects such as honey bees and silkworms are known to cause serious effects on colony health and productivity. In the field situation, however, microsporidian disease is more difficult to observe and the effects on non-pest wild insects have rarely been studied. Nosema bombi, a microsporidian pathogen of bumble bees (Bombus spp.) was implicated in the decimation of commercially produced Bombus occidentalis in the early 1990‟s in California, but the effects of this pathogen on natural Bombus populations has only recently been addressed. Other issues involve the use of exotic insects in classical biological control programs that may be infected with microsporidia. This presentation will address both the current situation concerning microsporidiosis in Bombus spp. in North America, and that of a microsporidium infecting a coleopteran predator, Sasajischymnus tsugae, of the hemlock woolly adelgid, Adelges tsugae.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication41st Annual Meeting of the Society for Invertebrate Pathology and 9th International Converence on Bacillus Thuringiensis, Incorporating COST862 Action: Bacterial Toxins for Insect Control, August 3-7, 2008, Coventry, UK
StatePublished - 2008


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