Location: Insect Genetics and Biochemistry Research
Project Number: 3060-21220-032-015-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement
Start Date: Sep 1, 2022
End Date: Jan 1, 2024
The objective of this research is to assess how organisms integrate signals from the environment into physiological changes through transcriptional and translational changes. The funds requested will support research associated with assessing the quality of agriculturally-relevant bee species, exposed to common environmental stresses including, but not limited to, temperature and agrochemicals. Additionally, research will also include deciphering the molecular underpinnings of maternal effects on the decision to undergo diapause in the alfalfa leafcutting bee.
The USDA-ARS will provide research space and material support including live insects as needed for the project. The collaborator will provide expertise in advanced molecular biology techniques and data analysis. The maternal contribution to diapause initiation component of the agreement will address the fact that we do not know what signal the mother is interpreting or how it is being communicated to its offspring. The collaborator will investigate this question by analyzing the differences in RNA populations deposited into eggs by diapausing and non-diapausing mothers. The assessment of bee quality under environmental stress component will help determine how temperature and seasonal changes affect the resilience of agricultural bee populations. In support of this goal, the collaborator will assist other USDA ARS researchers in their data analysis of stressful treatments in bee populations, including sequencing data from environmental stressed bees and those exposed to vibration stress.