Microsporidiosis in silkworms with particular reference to mulberry silkworm (Bombyx Mori L.)
Bhat IA, Buhroo ZI, Bhat MA
Mulberry silkworm, Bombyx mori is a poikilotherm, susceptible to several diseases. There are no silkworm races at present, which are deemed as totally resistant to diseases or pests. Mulberry silkworm Bombyx mori is affected by a number of diseases caused by viruses, bacteria, fungi and protozoa. These diseases are known to occur in almost all the silkworm rearing areas of the world causing considerable damage to the silkworm cocoon crop. Microsporidiosis of the silkworm, caused by highly virulent parasitic Microsporidian or Nosema bombycis is one of the most serious maladies, which determines the success or failure or sericulture industry in our country. The microsporidiosis of silkworm, commonly known as Pebrine is the earliest known menace to silk industry. Microbiological studies of silkworm were initiated after the outbreak of disease in France in 1845. Several historical evidences in various countries of the world showed that the outbreak of Pebrine disease had greatly influenced the decline of the sericulture industry in the past. This review is intended to present the vast information generated on the status of Microsporidiosis and challenges ahead to work out strategic future plans to prevent the sericulture industry from the losses suffered due to this disease.