Analysis of the Hypervariable Regions (HVRs) of the wsp Gene of Wolbachia from Solenopsis invicta Ants in Southeastern Brazil


Wolbachia is a bacterium that infects many arthropods with horizontal or vertical transmission. The introduction and spreading of Solenopsis invicta in new areas may have influenced the acquisition of Wolbachia as this ant species spread from its South America origin to other parts of the globe. The wsp gene of Wolbachia was analyzed using the WSP Typing and a similarity analysis was conducted to analyse the sharing of the symbiont among nests of S. invicta ants. The analyses revealed the presence of two groups of Wolbachia: strain A belonging to InvA S. invicta subgroup, and the strain B belonging to Acromyrmex insinuator. The wsp gene and its hypervariable regions are shared among the Wolbachia present in different types of ants inhabiting in the New World. Wolbachia strains found in the nests of S. invicta are ant-specialist symbionts which may have spread by several means among the ant population.

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Souza, R. , Martins, C. , Pereira, R. and Bueno, O. (2014) Analysis of the Hypervariable Regions (HVRs) of the wsp Gene of Wolbachia from Solenopsis invicta Ants in Southeastern Brazil. Advances in Entomology, 2, 135-143. doi: 10.4236/ae.2014.23021.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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