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Low natural levels of Nosema ceranae in Apis mellifera queens
- Traver, Brenna E., Fell, Richard D.
- Journal of invertebrate pathology 2012 v.110 no.3 pp. 408-410
- Apis mellifera, Nosema apis, Nosema ceranae, females, honey bee colonies, larvae, parasites, quantitative polymerase chain reaction, spermatheca, tissues
- Queens are the primary female reproductive individuals in honey bee colonies and, while they are generally free from Nosema ceranae infection, they are nevertheless susceptible. We sought to determine whether queens are naturally infected by N. ceranae, as these infections could be a factor in the rapid spread of this parasite. Queens were analyzed using real-time PCR and included larval queens, newly emerged, and older mated queens. Overall, we found that all tissues we examined were infected with N. ceranae at low levels but no samples were infected with Nosema apis. The infection of the ovaries and spermatheca suggests the possibility of vertical transmission of N. ceranae.