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5 November 2018 Quality Control of Bee-Collected Pollen Using Bumblebee Microcolonies and Molecular Approaches Reveals No Correlation Between Pollen Quality and Pathogen Presence
M.Y. Syromyatnikov, O.V. Savinkova, A.V. Panevina, S.A. Solodskikh, A.V. Lopatin, V.N. Popov
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Abstract

Bee-collected pollen is an essential protein source for honey bee and bumblebee colonies. Its quality directly affects bee health. We estimated the quality of pollen samples using bumblebee microcolonies and high-throughput sequencing for the presence of microorganisms. The tested samples of bee-collected pollen were of different quality, as estimated from their effect on the development of bumblebee microcolonies. Based on the pollen quality, we selected a subset of high-quality and low-quality pollen samples to further analyze them for the presence of microorganisms and pathogens. High-throughput sequencing revealed that the most common microorganisms in the bee-collected pollen were Acinetobacter spp. and bacteria of the genera Lactobacillus and Lactococcus. No pathogenic bacteria infectious for honey bees (e.g., those causing American and European foulbrood) or bumblebees have been identified in the analyzed pollen samples. Among potentially harmful microorganisms, there were bacteria from the Enterobacteriaceae family. The fungal pathogens Nosema apis and Nosema ceranae were detected in four samples; Ascosphaera sp. was found in six samples. Several viruses were found in the pollen samples, such as chronic bee paralysis virus, Israeli acute paralysis virus, deformed wing virus, sacbrood virus, and Kashmir bee virus. No correlation between the presence of these microorganisms or viruses and the impact of low-quality pollen samples on the bumblebee development was found. It is possible that factors affecting pollen quality are the absence of certain biologically active compounds or the presence of pesticides.

© The Author(s) 2018. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.
M.Y. Syromyatnikov, O.V. Savinkova, A.V. Panevina, S.A. Solodskikh, A.V. Lopatin, and V.N. Popov "Quality Control of Bee-Collected Pollen Using Bumblebee Microcolonies and Molecular Approaches Reveals No Correlation Between Pollen Quality and Pathogen Presence," Journal of Economic Entomology 112(1), 49-59, (5 November 2018). https://doi.org/10.1093/jee/toy345
Received: 1 August 2018; Accepted: 3 October 2018; Published: 5 November 2018
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KEYWORDS
bee-collected pollen
bumblebee microcolonies
high-throughput sequencing
pathogens
quality
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