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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Resistance to the Parasitic Mite Varroa Jacobsoni in Honey Bees from Far-Eastern Russia

Authors
item Rinderer, Thomas
item De Guzman, Lilia
item Delatte, Gary
item Stelzer, John
item Lancaster, Vicki - NEPTUNE & COMPANY
item Kuznetsov, Victor - RUSSIAN ACADEMY OF SCIENC
item Beaman, Glenda
item Watts, Rachel
item Harris, Jeffrey

Submitted to: Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: May 18, 2001
Publication Date: July 1, 2001
Citation: RINDERER, T.E., DEGUZMAN, L.I., DELATTE, G.T., STELZER, J.A., LANCASTER, V.A., KUZNETSOV, V., BEAMAN, G.D., WATTS, R.P., HARRIS, J.W., RESISTANCE TO THE PARASITIC MITE VARROA JACOBSONI IN HONEY BEES FROM FAR-EASTERN RUSSIA, APIDOLOGIE, 2001, VOL. 32, pgs. 381-394, EDITION #3.

Interpretive Summary: A population of honey bees from far-eastern Russia has been discovered which has a high degree or resistance to Varroa jacobsoni. This is the first time that useful genetic resistance to this pathogen has been found. The Russian honey bees and the genes that they have for resistance will be of great benefit for beekeeping world-wide. Beekeepers will be able to keep bees without having to treat their hives with toxic chemicals to control mite populations.

Technical Abstract: A controlled field study of the development of populations of the parasitic mite Varroa jacobsoni in honey bee colonies derived from the far-eastern Russian population shows that natural selection in the region has produced honey bees having strong resistance to the parasite. At the most, this introduced honey bee population has been under natural selection for 150 years. In that time, several interacting mechanisms of resistance have developed in the population. This source of breeding material will help mitigate the current world-wide plague of V. jacobsoni which is debilitating apiculture and the associated crop pollination accomplished using honey bees.

Last Modified: 4/21/2014