18 results found
Figueroa LL, Grab H, Ng WH, et al., 2020, Landscape simplification shapes pathogen prevalence in plant-pollinator networks, ECOLOGY LETTERS, ISSN: 1461-023X
Rothman JA, Leger L, Graystock P, et al., 2019, The bumble bee microbiome increases survival of bees exposed to selenate toxicity, Environmental Microbiology, Vol: 21, Pages: 3417-3429, ISSN: 1462-2912
Bumble bees are important and widespread insect pollinators who face many environmental challenges. For example, bees are exposed to the metalloid selenate when foraging on pollen and nectar from plants growing in contaminated soils. As it has been shown that the microbiome of animals reduces metalloid toxicity, we assayed the ability of the bee microbiome to increase survivorship against selenate challenge. We exposed uninoculated or microbiota-inoculated Bombus impatiens workers to a field-realistic dose of 0.75 mg l-1 selenate and found that microbiota-inoculated bees survive slightly but significantly longer than uninoculated bees. Using 16S rRNA gene sequencing, we found that selenate exposure altered gut microbial community composition and relative abundance of specific core bacteria. We also grew two core bumble bee microbes - Snodgrassella alvi and Lactobacillus bombicola - in selenate-spiked media and found that these bacteria grew in the tested concentrations of 0.001-10 mg l-1 selenate. Furthermore, the genomes of these microbes harbour genes involved in selenate detoxification. The bumble bee microbiome slightly increases survivorship when the host is exposed to selenate, but the specific mechanisms and colony-level benefits under natural settings require further study.
Southon RJ, Bell EF, Graystock P, et al., 2019, High indirect fitness benefits for helpers across the nesting cycle in the tropical paper wasp polistes canadensis, Molecular Ecology, Vol: 28, Pages: 3271-3284, ISSN: 0962-1083
Explaining the evolution of helping behaviour in the eusocial insects where non-reproductive ('worker') individuals help raise the offspring of other individuals ('queens'), remains one of the most perplexing phenomena in the natural world. Polistes paper wasps are popular study models, as workers retain the ability to reproduce: such totipotency is likely representative of the early stages of social evolution. Polistes is thought to have originated in the tropics, where seasonal constraints on reproductive options are weak and social groups are effectively perennial. Yet, most Polistes research has focused on non-tropical species, where seasonality causes family groups to disperse; cofoundresses forming new colonies the following spring are often unrelated, leading to the suggestion that direct fitness through nest inheritance is key in the evolution of helping behaviour. Here we present the first comprehensive genetic study of social structure across the perennial nesting cycle of a tropical Polistes - Polistes canadensis. Using both microsatellites and newly-developed single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers we show that adult cofoundresses are highly related, and that brood production is monopolised by a single female across the nesting cycle. Non-reproductive cofoundresses in tropical Polistes therefore have the potential to gain high indirect fitness benefits as helpers from the outset of group formation, and these benefits persist through the nesting cycle. Direct fitness may have been less important in the origin of Polistes sociality than previously suggested. These findings stress the importance of studying a range of species with diverse life-history and ecologies when considering the evolution of reproductive strategies.
Brockmeier EK, Hodges G, Hutchinson TH, et al., 2017, The role of omics in the application of adverse outcome pathways for chemical risk assessment, Toxicological Sciences, Vol: 158, Pages: 252-262, ISSN: 1096-0929
In conjunction with the second International Environmental Omics Symposium (iEOS) conference, held at the University of Liverpool (United Kingdom) in September 2014, a workshop was held to bring together experts in toxicology and regulatory science from academia, government and industry. The purpose of the workshop was to review the specific roles that high-content omics datasets (eg, transcriptomics, metabolomics, lipidomics, and proteomics) can hold within the adverse outcome pathway (AOP) framework for supporting ecological and human health risk assessments. In light of the growing number of examples of the application of omics data in the context of ecological risk assessment, we considered how omics datasets might continue to support the AOP framework. In particular, the role of omics in identifying potential AOP molecular initiating events and providing supportive evidence of key events at different levels of biological organization and across taxonomic groups was discussed. Areas with potential for short and medium-term breakthroughs were also discussed, such as providing mechanistic evidence to support chemical read-across, providing weight of evidence information for mode of action assignment, understanding biological networks, and developing robust extrapolations of species-sensitivity. Key challenges that need to be addressed were considered, including the need for a cohesive approach towards experimental design, the lack of a mutually agreed framework to quantitatively link genes and pathways to key events, and the need for better interpretation of chemically induced changes at the molecular level. This article was developed to provide an overview of ecological risk assessment process and a perspective on how high content molecular-level datasets can support the future of assessment procedures through the AOP framework.
Graystock P, Rehan SM, McFrederick QS, 2017, Hunting for healthy microbiomes: determining the core microbiomes of Ceratina, Megalopta, and Apis bees and how they associate with microbes in bee collected pollen, Conservation Genetics, Vol: 18, Pages: 701-711, ISSN: 1566-0621
Social corbiculate bees such as honey bees and bumble bees maintain a specific beneficial core microbiome which is absent in wild bees. It has been suggested that maintaining this microbiome can prevent disease and keep bees healthy. The main aim of our study was to identify if there are any core bacterial groups in the non-corbiculate bees Ceratina and Megalopta that have been previously overlooked. We additionally test for associations between the core bee microbes and pollen provisions to look for potential transmission between the two. We identify three enterotypes in Ceratina samples, with thirteen core bacterial phylotypes in Ceratina females: Rosenbergiella, Pseudomonas, Gilliamella, Lactobacillus, Caulobacter, Snodgrassella, Acinetobacter, Corynebacterium, Sphingomonas, Commensalibacter, Methylobacterium, Massilia, and Stenotrophomonas, plus 19 in pollen (6 of which are shared by bees). Unlike Apis bees, whose gut microbial community differs compared to their pollen, Ceratina adults and pollen largely share a similar microbial composition and enterotype difference was largely explained by pollen age. Megalopta displays a highly diverse composition of microbes throughout all adults, yet Lactobacillus and Saccharibacter were prevalent in 90% of adults as core bacteria. Only Lactobacillus was both a core bee and pollen provision microbe in all three species. The consequences of such diversity in core microbiota between bee genera and their associations with pollen are discussed in relation to identifying potentially beneficial microbial taxa in wild bees to aid the conservation of wild, understudied, non-model bee species.
Smith AR, Graystock P, Hughes WOH, 2016, Specialization on pollen or nectar in bumblebee foragers is not associated with ovary size, lipid reserves or sensory tuning, PeerJ, Vol: 4, ISSN: 2167-8359
Foraging specialization allows social insects to more efficiently exploit resources in their environment. Recent research on honeybees suggests that specialization on pollen or nectar among foragers is linked to reproductive physiology and sensory tuning (the Reproductive Ground-Plan Hypothesis; RGPH). However, our understanding of the underlying physiological relationships in non-Apis bees is still limited. Here we show that the bumblebee Bombus terrestris has specialist pollen and nectar foragers, and test whether foraging specialization in B. terrestris is linked to reproductive physiology, measured as ovarian activation. We show that neither ovary size, sensory sensitivity, measured through proboscis extension response (PER), or whole-body lipid stores differed between pollen foragers, nectar foragers, or generalist foragers. Body size also did not differ between any of these three forager groups. Non-foragers had significantly larger ovaries than foragers. This suggests that potentially reproductive individuals avoid foraging.
Graystock P, Jones JC, Pamminger T, et al., 2016, Hygienic food to reduce pathogen risk to bumblebees, JOURNAL OF INVERTEBRATE PATHOLOGY, Vol: 136, Pages: 68-73, ISSN: 0022-2011
Graystock P, Blane EJ, McFrederick QS, et al., 2016, Do managed bees drive parasite spread and emergence in wild bees?, International Journal for Parasitology: Parasites and Wildlife, Vol: 5, Pages: 64-75, ISSN: 2213-2244
Bees have been managed and utilised for honey production for centuries and, more recently, pollination services. Since the mid 20th Century, the use and production of managed bees has intensified with hundreds of thousands of hives being moved across countries and around the globe on an annual basis. However, the introduction of unnaturally high densities of bees to areas could have adverse effects. Importation and deployment of managed honey bee and bumblebees may be responsible for parasite introductions or a change in the dynamics of native parasites that ultimately increases disease prevalence in wild bees. Here we review the domestication and deployment of managed bees and explain the evidence for the role of managed bees in causing adverse effects on the health of wild bees. Correlations with the use of managed bees and decreases in wild bee health from territories across the globe are discussed along with suggestions to mitigate further health reductions in wild bees.
Graystock P, Meeus I, Smagghe G, et al., 2016, The effects of single and mixed infections of Apicystis bombi and deformed wing virus in Bombus terrestris, PARASITOLOGY, Vol: 143, Pages: 358-365, ISSN: 0031-1820
Graystock P, Goulson D, Hughes WOH, 2015, Parasites in bloom: flowers aid dispersal and transmission of pollinator parasites within and between bee species, PROCEEDINGS OF THE ROYAL SOCIETY B-BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES, Vol: 282, ISSN: 0962-8452
Southon RJ, Bell EF, Graystock P, et al., 2015, Long live the wasp: adult longevity in captive colonies of the eusocial paper wasp Polistes canadensis (L.), PeerJ, Vol: 3, ISSN: 2167-8359
Insects have been used as an exemplary model in studying longevity, from extrinsic mortality pressures to intrinsic senescence. In the highly eusocial insects, great degrees of variation in lifespan exist between morphological castes in relation to extreme divisions of labour, but of particular interest are the primitively eusocial insects. These species represent the ancestral beginnings of eusociality, in which castes are flexible and based on behaviour rather than morphology. Here we present data on the longevity of the primitively eusocial Neotropical paper wasp P. canadensis, in a captive setting removed of environmental hazards. Captive Polistes canadensis had an average lifespan of 193 ± 10.5 days; although this average is shorter than most bee and ant queens, one individual lived for 506 days in the lab—longer than most recorded wasps and bees. Natal colony variation in longevity does exist between P. canadensis colonies, possibly due to nutritional and genetic factors. This study provides a foundation for future investigations on the effects of intrinsic and extrinsic factors on longevity in primitively eusocial insects, as well as the relationship with natal group and cohort size.
Graystock P, Goulson D, Hughes WOH, 2014, The relationship between managed bees and the prevalence of parasites in bumblebees, PEERJ, Vol: 2, ISSN: 2167-8359
Tranter C, Graystock P, Shaw C, et al., 2014, Sanitizing the fortress: protection of ant brood and nest material by worker antibiotics, BEHAVIORAL ECOLOGY AND SOCIOBIOLOGY, Vol: 68, Pages: 499-507, ISSN: 0340-5443
Maharramov J, Meeus I, Maebe K, et al., 2013, Genetic Variability of the Neogregarine Apicystis bombi, an Etiological Agent of an Emergent Bumblebee Disease, PLOS ONE, Vol: 8, ISSN: 1932-6203
Graystock P, Yates K, Darvill B, et al., 2013, Emerging dangers: Deadly effects of an emergent parasite in a new pollinator host, JOURNAL OF INVERTEBRATE PATHOLOGY, Vol: 114, Pages: 114-119, ISSN: 0022-2011
Graystock P, Yates K, Evison SEF, et al., 2013, The Trojan hives: pollinator pathogens, imported and distributed in bumblebee colonies, JOURNAL OF APPLIED ECOLOGY, Vol: 50, Pages: 1207-1215, ISSN: 0021-8901
Graystock P, Hughes WOH, 2011, Disease resistance in a weaver ant, Polyrhachis dives, and the role of antibiotic-producing glands, BEHAVIORAL ECOLOGY AND SOCIOBIOLOGY, Vol: 65, Pages: 2319-2327, ISSN: 0340-5443
Rothman JA, Russell KA, Leger L, et al., The direct and indirect effects of environmental toxicants on the health of bumble bees and their microbiomes
<jats:title>Abstract</jats:title><jats:p>Bumble bees (<jats:italic>Bombus</jats:italic> spp.) are important and widespread insect pollinators, but the act of foraging on flowers can expose them to harmful pesticides and environmental chemicals such as oxidizers and heavy metals. How these compounds directly influence bee survival and indirectly affect bee health via the gut microbiome is largely unknown. As the toxins and toxicants in floral nectar and pollen take many forms, we explored the genomes of core bumblebee microbes (Using RAST) for their potential to detoxify cadmium, copper, selenium, the neonicotinoid pesticide imidacloprid, and hydrogen peroxide - which have all been identified in floral nectar and pollen. We then exposed <jats:italic>Bombus impatiens</jats:italic> workers to varying concentrations of these chemicals spiked into their diet and identified the direct effects on bee survival. Using field realistic doses, we further explored indirect effects on bee microbiomes. We found multiple genes in core gut microbes that have the potential to aid in detoxifying harmful chemicals. We also found that while the chemicals are largely toxic at levels within and above field-realistic concentrations, the field-realistic concentrations - except for imidacloprid - altered the composition of the bee microbiome, potentially causing gut dysbiosis. Overall, our study shows that environmental chemicals found in floral nectar and pollen can directly cause bee mortality, and at field-realistic levels, likely have indirect, deleterious effects on bee health via their influence on the bee microbiome.</jats:p>
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