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Author Topic: How did sex get into the act?  (Read 2167 times)

Offline wayseer

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Offline JP

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Re: How did sex get into the act?
« Reply #1 on: May 31, 2008, 09:11:02 AM »
Beekman says "genetic diversity is believed to make the colony more resistant to disease and also allow for worker bees from different fathers, who have different strengths and weaknesses, to have specialized roles in the colony."

I was talking with Alan Buckley in ventrillo the other day about this very thing, and his opinion is that those areas and perhaps states that are not having an issue with CCD are those that more than likely have lots of genetic diversity, as in feral colonies.

We have lots here as some of you know by my posts. Alan said one of the culprits could be inbreeding, it seems Beekman's findings support what Alan is saying.

You know with a name like Beekman, you just have to have something to do with bees, right? ;)

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Offline MarkF

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Re: How did sex get into the act?
« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2008, 05:27:44 PM »
How about the simple explanation. They are that way because God made them that way! ;)
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Offline eri

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Re: How did sex get into the act?
« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2008, 09:43:07 AM »
Thanks for posting, JP. Regarding CCD, I've read articles which suggest that a reduction in the number of feral bee colonies (due to varroa mites in one article) to mate with 'managed' colonies contributes to the lack of genetic diversity, another possible variable in CCD.

With all the discussion about splitting 'good' hives to preserve the genetics, I wondered about the negative effects of inbreeding, and subsequently about bee genetics. I found this article about 'natural selection' vs. 'balanced selection' in honeybees. Below is an excerpt. The full article is here http://www.ur.umich.edu/0607/Oct30_06/02.shtml

In the research, Zhang and co-workers from U-M, Michigan State University (MSU) and the University of Kansas sequenced csd genes from individuals in three closely related species of honeybee: the familiar backyard denizen Apis mellifera and the Asian honeybees Apis dorsata and Apis cerana. The group also sequenced six so-called neutral regions of the genome, which, unlike genes, do not carry codes telling cells how to make proteins. Then, the researchers constructed gene genealogies—family trees for both the csd gene and the neutral regions.

"Their results showed that csd is about seven times more variable than neutral regions of the honeybee genome. In addition, many csd variants are shared among the three species, evidence that the many different alleles have been preserved in these lineages for a very long time.

"Such a pattern supports the idea that an evolutionary mechanism known as balancing selection has been at work. Evolution works through the process of natural selection, in which genetic mutations that offer some advantage are favored, and those that have harmful effects are weeded out. Typically, this results in one version of a gene becoming very common and other versions becoming rare or disappearing altogether. When balancing selection operates, however, natural selection favors a diverse mix of alleles, as seen with csd in honeybees.
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