Location: Bee Research LaboratoryTitle: Extracts of polypore mushroom mycelia reduce viruses in honey bees
|STAMETS, PAUL - Fungi Perfecti|
|NAEGER, NICHOLAS - Washington State University|
|HAN, JENNIFER - Washington State University|
|HOPKINS, BRANDON - Washington State University|
|MOERSHEL, HENRY - Fungi Perfecti|
|NALLY, REGAN - Fungi Perfecti|
|SUMERLIN, DAVID - Fungi Perfecti|
|SHEPPARD, WALTER - Fungi Perfecti|
Submitted to: Scientific Reports
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/4/2018
Publication Date: 10/4/2018
Citation: Stamets, P.E., Naeger, N., Evans, J.D., Han, J., Hopkins, B., Lopez, D.L., Moershel, H., Nally, R., Sumerlin, D., Sheppard, W.S. 2018. Extracts of polypore mushroom mycelia reduce viruses in honey bees. Scientific Reports. 8(1):13936. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-32194-8.
Interpretive Summary: Honey bees are strongly impacted by disease. One approach for managing honey bee disease is to identify known compounds and extracts that lower disease levels in humans and other hosts, and then introduce those compounds to diseased honey bees. This study documents promising reductions in virus levels following controlled exposure of bees to extracts from fungi known to have medicinal properties. The hope is that such extracts can be used to reduce honey bee disease loads, stabilizing honey bee populations for their pollination services and abilities to produce honey and other hive products.
Technical Abstract: Waves of highly infectious viruses sweeping through global honey bee populations have contributed to recent declines in honey bee health. Bees have been observed foraging on mushroom mycelium, suggesting that they may be deriving medicinal or nutritional value from fungi. Fungi are known to produce a wide array of chemicals with antimicrobial activity, including compounds active against bacteria, other fungi, or viruses. We tested extracts from the mycelium of multiple polypore fungal species known to have antiviral properties. Extracts from amadou (Fomes) and reishi (Ganoderma) fungi reduced the levels of honey bee Deformed wing virus (DWV) and Lake sinai virus (LSV) in a dose-dependent manner. In field trials, colonies fed Ganoderma resinaceum extract exhibited a 79-fold reduction in DWV and a 45,000-fold reduction in LSV compared to control colonies. These findings indicate honey bees may gain health benefits from fungi and their antimicrobial compounds.