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Larvae act as a transient transmission hub for the prevalent bumblebee parasite Crithidia bombi

Larvae act as a transient transmission hub for the prevalent bumblebee parasite Crithidia bombi

Folly, Arran J., Koch, Hauke, Stevenson, Philip C. and Brown, Mark J. F. (2017) Larvae act as a transient transmission hub for the prevalent bumblebee parasite Crithidia bombi. Journal of Invertebrate Pathology, 148. pp. 81-85. ISSN 0022-2011 (doi:10.1016/j.jip.2017.06.001)

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Abstract

Disease transmission networks are key for understanding parasite epidemiology. Within the social insects, structured contact networks have been suggested to limit the spread of diseases to vulnerable members of their society, such as the queen or brood. However, even these complex social structures do not provide complete protection, as some diseases, which are transmitted by workers during brood care, can still infect the brood. Given the high rate of feeding interactions that occur in a social insect colony, larvae may act as disease transmission hubs. Here we use the bumblebee Bombus terrestris and its parasite Crithidia bombi to determine the role of brood in bumblebee disease transmission networks. Larvae that were artificially inoculated with C. bombi showed no signs of infection seven days after inoculation. However, larvae that received either an artificial inoculation or a contaminated feed from brood-caring workers were able to transmit the parasite to naive workers. These results suggest that the developing brood is a potential route of intracolonial disease transmission and should be included when considering social insect disease transmission networks.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/BY/4.0/). *** Open Access funded by Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Bombus terrestris, Trypanosomatid, Epidemiology, Brood diseases
Subjects: S Agriculture > S Agriculture (General)
Faculty / Department / Research Group: Faculty of Engineering & Science
Faculty of Engineering & Science > Natural Resources Institute
Faculty of Engineering & Science > Natural Resources Institute > Agriculture, Health & Environment Department
Faculty of Engineering & Science > Natural Resources Institute > Chemical Ecology Research Group
Last Modified: 11 Apr 2018 12:02
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: None
Selected for GREAT 2018: GREAT c
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/17385

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