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Martin-Hernandez R.,Centro Apicola Regional | Martin-Hernandez R.,Institute Recursos Humanos para la Ciencia y la Tecnologia INCRECYT | Botias C.,Centro Apicola Regional | Bailon E.G.,Centro Apicola Regional | And 4 more authors.
Environmental Microbiology | Year: 2012

Nosema ceranae has been suggested to be replacing Nosema apis in some populations of Apis mellifera honeybees. However, this replacement from one to the other is not supported when studying the distribution and prevalence of both microsporidia in professional apiaries in Spanish territories (transverse study), their seasonal pattern in experimental hives with co-infection or their prevalence at individual level (either in worker bees or drones). Nevertheless, N. ceranae has shown to present a higher prevalence at all the studied levels that could indicate any advantage for its development over N. apis or that it is more adapted to Spanish conditions. Also, both microsporidia show a different pattern of preference for its development according to the prevalence in the different Spanish bioclimatic belts studied. Finally, the fact that all analyses were carried out using an Internal PCR Control (IPC) newly developed guarantees the confidence of the data extracted from the PCR analyses. This IPC provides a useful tool for laboratory detection of honeybee pathogens. © 2011 Society for Applied Microbiology and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Munoz I.,University of Murcia | Cepero A.,Centro Apicola Regional | Pinto M.A.,Polytechnic Institute of Braganca | Martin-Hernandez R.,Centro Apicola Regional | And 3 more authors.
Infection, Genetics and Evolution | Year: 2014

Microsporidiosis caused by Nosema species is one of the factors threatening the health of the honeybee (Apis mellifera), which is an essential element in agriculture mainly due to its pollination function. The dispersion of this pathogen may be influenced by many factors, including various aspects of beekeeping management such as introduction of queens with different origin. Herein we study the relation of the presence and distribution of Nosema spp. and the replacement of queens in honeybee populations settled on the Atlantic Canary Islands. While Nosema apis has not been detected, an increase of the presence and distribution of Nosema ceranae during the last decade has been observed in parallel with a higher frequency of foreign queens. On the other hand, a reduction of the number of N. ceranae positive colonies was observed on those islands with continued replacement of queens. We suggest that such replacement could help maintaining low rates of Nosema infection, but healthy queens native to these islands should be used in order to conserve local honeybee diversity. © 2014 Elsevier B.V.

Gomez-Moracho T.,Centro Apicola Regional | Maside X.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Martin-Hernandez R.,Centro Apicola Regional | Martin-Hernandez R.,Institute Recursos Humanos para la Ciencia y la Tecnologia INCRECYT | And 2 more authors.
Parasitology | Year: 2014

Nosema ceranae is a widespread honeybee parasite, considered to be one of the pathogens involved in the colony losses phenomenon. To date, little is known about its intraspecific genetic variability. The few studies on N. ceranae variation have focused on the subunits of ribosomal DNA, which are not ideal for this purpose and have limited resolution. Here we characterized three single copy loci (Actin, Hsp70 and RPB1) in three N. ceranae isolates from Hungary and Hawaii. Our results provide evidence of unexpectedly high levels of intraspecific polymorphism, the coexistence of a wide variety of haplotypes within each bee colony, and the occurrence of genetic recombination in RPB1. Most haplotypes are not shared across isolates and derive from a few frequent haplotypes by a reduced number of singletons (mutations that appear usually just once in the sample), which suggest that they have a fairly recent origin. Overall, our data indicate that this pathogen has experienced a recent population expansion. The presence of multiple haplotypes within individual isolates could be explained by the existence of different strains of N. ceranae infecting honeybee colonies in the field which complicates, and must not be overlooked, further analysis of host-parasite interactions. © Cambridge University Press 2013.

Botias C.,Centro Apicola Regional CAR | Martin-Hernandez R.,Centro Apicola Regional CAR | Martin-Hernandez R.,Institute Recursos Humanos para la Ciencia y la Tecnologia INCRECYT | Garrido-Bailon E.,Centro Apicola Regional CAR | And 5 more authors.
Research in Veterinary Science | Year: 2012

Microsporidiosis caused by infection with Nosema apis or Nosema ceranae has become one of the most widespread diseases of honey bees and can cause important economic losses for beekeepers. Honey can be contaminated by spores of both species and it has been reported as a suitable matrix to study the field prevalence of other honey bee sporulated pathogens. Historical honey sample collections from the CAR laboratory (Centro Apícola Regional) were analyzed by PCR to identify the earliest instance of emergence, and to determine whether the presence of Nosema spp. in honey was linked to the spread of these microsporidia in honey bee apiaries. A total of 240 frozen honey samples were analyzed by PCR and the results compared with rates of Nosema spp. infection in worker bee samples from different years and geographical areas. The presence of Nosema spp. in hive-stored honey from naturally infected honey bee colonies (from an experimental apiary) was also monitored, and although collected honey bees resulted in a more suitable sample to study the presence of microsporidian parasites in the colonies, a high probability of finding Nosema spp. in their hive-stored honey was observed. The first honey sample in which N. ceranae was detected dates back to the year 2000. In subsequent years, the number of samples containing N. ceranae tended to increase, as did the detection of Nosema spp. in adult worker bees. The presence of N. ceranae as early as 2000, long before generalized bee depopulation and colony losses in 2004 may be consistent with a long incubation period for nosemosis type C or related with other unknown factors. The current prevalence of nosemosis, primarily due to N. ceranae, has reached epidemic levels in Spain as confirmed by the analysis of worker honey bees and commercial honey. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

Higes M.,Centro Apicola Regional CAR | Meana A.,Complutense University of Madrid | Bartolome C.,University of Santiago de Compostela | Botias C.,Centro Apicola Regional CAR | Martin-Hernandez R.,Institute Recursos Humanos para la Ciencia y la Tecnologia INCRECYT
Environmental Microbiology Reports | Year: 2013

The worldwide beekeeping sector has been facing a grave threat, with losses up to 100-1000 times greater than those previously reported. Despite the scale of this honey bee mortality, the causes underlying this phenomenon remain unclear, yet they are thought to be multifactorial processes. Nosema ceranae, a microsporidium recently detected in the European bee all over the world, has been implicated in the global phenomenon of colony loss, although its role remains controversial. A review of the current knowledge about this pathogen is presented focussing on discussion related with divergent results, trying to analyse the differences specially based on different methodologies applied and divisive aspects on pathology while considering a biological or veterinarian point of view. For authors, the disease produced by N.ceranae infection cannot be considered a regional problem but rather a global one, as indicated by the wide prevalence of this parasite in multiple hosts. Not only does this type of nosemosis causes a clear pathology on honeybees at both the individual and colony levels, but it also has significant effects on the production of honeybee products. Journal compilation © 2012 Society for Applied Microbiology and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

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