T2M Establishing the disease status of A cerana Java strain in the Cairns region
Project code: PRJ-008433
Project stage: Closed
Project start date: Friday, June 1, 2012
Project completion date: Tuesday, June 4, 2013
National Priority: HBE-Improve understanding of nutrition best practice and disease interaction
The objectives for this study are to establish the disease status of the Asian honeybee and the European honeybee in the Cairns region. With this information we will aim to identify the possible transferability of pathogens from the Asian honeybee to the European honeybee in the Cairns region.
Identification of honeybee pathogens will involve a two-pronged approach. One approach (1) will engage metagenomic sequencing while the other approach (2) will use standard laboratory procedures as described by Anderson (1990, J. Apic. Res. Vol 29: 53-59) and Chen (2004, J. Inv. Path. Vol 87: 84-93).
Metagenomic sequencing of DNA and RNA from pooled samples of A. cerana and A. mellfiera will be performed at the Biomedical Research Facility based at the Australian National University. Genomic sequence data will be analysed and compared with public sequence databases to assemble partial genomes and identify known and unknown pathogens.
The second approach will use bioassays involving the injection of honeybee extracts into pupae and adults of both A. cerana and A. mellfera to propagate viruses. PCR and serology techniques will be used to identify known viruses. Injected bees that show signs of disease, but are negative in PCR and serology tests, will be further tested to isolate novel pathogens.
1.Collect samples of live (healthy and diseased) and dead brood from both Asian honey bees (Apis cerana Java strain) in the Cairns region
2.Collect samples of live (healthy and diseased) and dead adults from both Asian honey bees (Apis cerana Java strain) in the Cairns region
3.Collect samples of live (healthy and diseased) and dead brood from both European honey bees (Apis mellifera) in the Cairns region
4.Collect samples of live (healthy and diseased) and dead adults from both European honey bees (Apis mellifera) in the Cairns region
5.Where appropriate obtain and examine comb from both species
6.Test for the presence of bee pathogenic agents including: viruses (both described and undescribed); fungi (both described and undescribed); protozoa (both described and undescribed) and bacteria (both described and undescribed).
7.Where possible identify the (likely) transmissibility of identified pathogenic agents from Apis cerana Java strain to European honey bees (Apis mellifera) in the Cairns region
8.Provide a set of diagnostic techniques to enable diagnostics of pathogenic agents identified in the Apis cerana Java strain from the Cairns region.