Association of Honey Bee SNPs with Varroa destructor mite resistance
Department of Agriculture
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Small Business Information
Bee Power, LP
16481 CR 319 Lynn Grove Road, Navasota, TX, 77868
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
CEO and Manager
CEO and Manager
Abstract"Honey bee pollination is estimated to contribute over $14 billion annually to agricultural production. Honey bee pollination services in the larger ecosystem are also of vital importance. However, apiculture in the United States is threatened, especially by infestations of exotic parasitic mites. Varroa destructor, in particular, is lethal to many colonies, decimating both feral and managed honey bee populations. But some strains of managed bees have been identified that exhibit resistance to, or tolerance of Varroa, including invasive Africanized Honey Bee (AHB).. Thus, these resistant populations may provide a reservoir of advantageous genetic variation.. Identification of molecular markers that are associated with Varroa resistance in these populations would enable more efficient screening of colonies for resistant phenotypes and accelerate production of Varroa resistant bees. Therefore, identification of Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs) and haplotypes that are associated with Varroa destructor resistance would provide new technological innovation to support marker-assisted breeding of Varroa resistant honey bees, benefiting the entire Apiculture industry, as well as all pollination-dependent agriculture. We propose collecting drones and/or worker bees from: (a) feral colonies that have survived despite Varroa parasitism; (b) 5 managed strains or lines that exhibit high levels of Varroa resistance; (c) and samples of worker bees or drones from susceptible strains. These samples will be genotyped for 1536 SNPs each. Phase I results will be subjected to principal component analysis, Bayesian haplotype analysis and sum statistics to identify those SNPs and haplotypes that are most closely associated with mite resistance."
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