Transcription profiling of honey bee brains of individuals with nurse and forager roles
ABSTRACT: This experiment examines gene expression profiles in individual honey bee brains (adult worker Apis mellifera). The purpose is to test whether behavioral phenotype can be predicted by expression profiles in individual brains in a naturalistic context (i.e., colonies in the field). The two behavioral phenotypes examined are 'nurse' and 'forager'. Other factors examined are age, genotype (full-sister group), and colony environment.
An additional processed data file is available on the FTP site for this experiment.
We show that the age-related transition by adult honey bees from hive work to foraging is associated with changes in messenger RNA abundance in the brain for 39% of approximately 5500 genes tested. This result, discovered using a highly replicated experimental design involving 72 microarrays, demonstrates more extensive genomic plasticity in the adult brain than has yet been shown. Experimental manipulations that uncouple behavior and age revealed that messenger RNA changes were primarily associ ...[more]
Project description:This experiment examines gene expression profiles in the brains of adult honey bee workers (Apis mellifera) performing different behavioral tasks in the hive. The different behavioral groups examined were nurse, comb builder, guard, undertaker, and forager. The comb builder, guard, and undertaker behavioral groups perform their respective tasks over a relatively short time scale (typically 1 day), while nursing and foraging are longer duration (lasting > 1 week). The purpose of this study was to examine whether behaviors that persist over different time scales are associated with differences in the extent of gene expression changes in the brain.
Project description:Expression profiling of brains of free-flying forager bees and hive-restricted bees that rushed toward the hive entrance when the screen was removed, apparently to attempt to forage.
Project description:Expression profiling of honey bee brains as a function of treatments that accelerate the onset of foraging. Treatment groups included three treatments that accelerate the onset of foraging (methoprene [juvenile hormone analog], manganese, and cGMP) and two treatments that do not accelerate the onset of foraging (cAMP and vehicle control).
Project description:This experiment was designed to monitor the gene expression changes of young bees raised with and without queen mandibular pheromone (QMP). This experiment was a timecourse, comparing QMP- to QMP+ bees over 4 days of exposure. Bees that had eclosed over 16 hours were collected from a brood frame and placed in cages, 35 bees/cage. 8 hours later, queen mandibular pheromone (QMP, 0.1 queen equivalents) treatment was initiated, and fresh QMP was placed in the cage every day. One hour after QMP treatment had been refreshed, QMP- and QMP+ cages were collected into liquid nitrogen. 8 cages of each were collected on each day of the timecourse (1 day of treatment = Day 1, as well as Day 2, Day 3, and Day4).
Project description:This experiment was designed to identify gene expression differences in young bees raised in colonies with a queen, with queen mandibular pheromone (QMP), or without a queen. The source colony was split into three colonies, allocating roughly equal quantities of adult bees, brood, and pollen and nectar stores. One colony retained the original queen (QR), one was left queenless (QL), and the third was given a strip that contained 10 Qeq (QMP+), a dose shown to mimic a live queen (20). The three colonies were transferred to a different apiary > 2 mi away so they would not return to the site of their natal hive. Prior to the colony split, bees (N ~1500) were collected 0-36 h after eclosion, marked on the dorsal thorax with a paint dot (Testors Paint), and ~500 were placed in each of the three colonies. Two days later, the marked bees were collected (N = 100). Bees were collected into liquid nitrogen, and heads were stored as above.
Project description:Here we show that regions of the honeybee brain involved in visual processing and learning and memory show a genomic response to distance information. Using a method that separates effects of perceived distance from effects of actual distance flown, we found that individuals forced to shift from a short to a perceived long distance to reach a feeding site showed differences in gene expression in the optic lobes and mushroom bodies relative to individuals that continued to perceive flying a short distance.