Development of a multiplex RT-PCR for the simultaneous detection of three viruses of the honeybee (Apis mellifera L.): Acute bee paralysis virus, Black queen cell virus and Sacbrood virus

Elvira Grabensteiner, Tamás Bakonyi, Wolfgang Ritter, Hermann Pechhacker, Norbert Nowotny

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

31 Citations (Scopus)


A single-step multiple-target (multiplex) reverse transcription-PCR (RT-PCR) was developed for the simultaneous detection and differentiation of three economically important viruses of the honeybee Apis mellifera L.: Acute bee paralysis virus (ABPV), Black queen cell virus (BQCV) and Sacbrood virus (SBV). Three compatible sets of primers, specific for each virus, were designed in conserved regions of the viral genomes for use in a one-step (single tube) RT-PCR assay. The individual RT-PCR assays and the combined multiplex assay were optimized for highest sensitivity and specificity. The multiplex RT-PCR assay was tested on field samples collected from Austrian honeybee colonies. All three viruses were detected, and their identity was confirmed by sequencing of the PCR products. The described multiplex RT-PCR proved to be an accurate tool for rapid simultaneous detection of ABPV, BQCV and SBV directly in honeybee specimens.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)222-225
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Invertebrate Pathology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2007



  • Acute bee paralysis virus
  • Apis mellifera
  • Black queen cell virus
  • Honeybee
  • Multiplex RT-PCR
  • Sacbrood virus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Insect Science

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