Location: Bee Research Laboratory
Project Number: 8042-21000-277-03-R
Project Type: Reimbursable
Start Date: Jan 1, 2011
End Date: Dec 31, 2013
This study proposes to address the biology of one of the most important agricultural species by providing an inclusive reference metagenomic dataset for the honey bee microbiota across different life stages, geography and disease states. ARS is interested in defining and regulating microbes that impact honey bee colony health. The Cooperator is interested in the physiological impacts of microbes on insects and on determining genomic traits in microbes that impact insect-microbe interactions and their affects on insect nutrition. The genomic resources from this project will be used by a large community of basic and applied investigators. This project will contribute valuable information for efforts to safeguard honey bee health.
ARS and the Cooperator will generate this genomic resource by staging controlled experiments, soliciting bees, and isolating genetic material for 1) high-throughput DNA sequencing, 2) comparisons with existing metagenomic databases and resources from honey bees, and 3) follow-up assays of microbial associations with and impacts on healthy and diseased bees. The ARS Bee Research Laboratory will be responsible for sample collection and purification in order to develop a combined pool of DNA and RNA for genomic analyses. We will also process two distinct honey bee samples for Roche GS-FLX Titanium sequencing runs and provide expertise to the cooperator on honey bee physiology and pathology.