Junonia coenia densovirus (JcDNV) is an ambisense insect parvovirus highly pathogenic for lepidopteran pests at larval stages. The potential use of DNVs as biological control agents prompted us to reinvestigate the host range and cellular mechanisms of infection. In order to understand the early events of infection, we set up a functional infection assay in a cell line of the pest Lymantria dispar to determine the intracellular pathway undertaken by JcDNV to infect a permissive lepidopteran cell line. Our results show that JcDNV particles are rapidly internalized into clathrin-coated vesicles and slowly traffic within early and late endocytic compartments. Blocking late-endocytic trafficking or neutralizing the pH with drugs inhibited infection. During internalization, disruption of the cytoskeleton, and inhibition of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase blocked the movement of vesicles containing the virus to the nucleus and impaired infection. In summary, our results define for the first time the early endocytic steps required for a productive DNV infection
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