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The life cycle of the Lymantria dispar nuclear polyhedrosis virus (LdMNPV) was characterized through analysis of budded virus (BV) release, the temporal formation of polyhedra, the temporal transcription pattern of representative early, late, and hyper-expressed late genes, and the onset of DNA replication in the Ld652Y cell line. Transcripts from the LdMNPV immediate early gene G22 were detected 4 h post infection (h p.i.). The late and hyper-expressed late p39 capsid and polyhedrin genes were initially transcribed at approximately 20 and 24 h p.i., respectively. Viral DNA replication initiated at approximately 18-20 h p.i. Budded virus was released from infected cells between 24 and 36 h p.i., and polyhedra were first detected at approximately 48 h p.i.