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Article

Dynamics of the Honeybee (Apis mellifera) Gut Microbiota Throughout the Overwintering Period in Canada

1
Biology Departement, Laval University, 1045 Avenue de la Médecine, Quebec City, QC G1V 0A6, Canada
2
Centre de Recherche en Sciences Animales de Deschambault (CRSAD), 120a Chemin du Roy, Deschambault, QC G0A 1S0, Canada
3
Institut de Biologie Intégrative et des Systèmes (IBIS), Laval University, 1030 Avenue de la Médecine, Quebec City, QC G1V 0A6, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Microorganisms 2020, 8(8), 1146; https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms8081146
Received: 25 June 2020 / Revised: 22 July 2020 / Accepted: 27 July 2020 / Published: 29 July 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microorganisms in Pollinators: Interactions with Other Factors)
Microbial symbionts inhabiting the honeybee gut (i.e., gut microbiota) are essential for food digestion, immunity, and gut protection of their host. The taxonomic composition of the gut microbiota is dynamic throughout the honeybee life cycle and the foraging season. However, it remains unclear how drastic changes occurring in winter, such as food shortage and cold weather, impact gut microbiota dynamics. The objective of this study was to characterize the gut microbiota of the honeybee during the overwintering period in a northern temperate climate in Canada. The microbiota of nine honeybee colonies was characterized by metataxonomy of 16S rDNA between September 2017 and June 2018. Overall, the results showed that microbiota taxonomic composition experienced major compositional shifts in fall and spring. From September to November, Enterobacteriaceae decreased, while Neisseriaceae increased. From April to June, Orbaceae increased, whereas Rhizobiaceae nearly disappeared. Bacterial diversity of the gut microbiota decreased drastically before and after overwintering, but it remained stable during winter. We conclude that the honeybee gut microbiota is likely to be impacted by the important meteorological and dietary changes that take place before and after the overwintering period. Laboratory trials are needed to determine how the observed variations affect the honeybee health. View Full-Text
Keywords: microbiome; gut dysbiosis; symbiont; winter; pollinator microbiome; gut dysbiosis; symbiont; winter; pollinator
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MDPI and ACS Style

Bleau, N.; Bouslama, S.; Giovenazzo, P.; Derome, N. Dynamics of the Honeybee (Apis mellifera) Gut Microbiota Throughout the Overwintering Period in Canada. Microorganisms 2020, 8, 1146. https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms8081146

AMA Style

Bleau N, Bouslama S, Giovenazzo P, Derome N. Dynamics of the Honeybee (Apis mellifera) Gut Microbiota Throughout the Overwintering Period in Canada. Microorganisms. 2020; 8(8):1146. https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms8081146

Chicago/Turabian Style

Bleau, Naomie, Sidki Bouslama, Pierre Giovenazzo, and Nicolas Derome. 2020. "Dynamics of the Honeybee (Apis mellifera) Gut Microbiota Throughout the Overwintering Period in Canada" Microorganisms 8, no. 8: 1146. https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms8081146

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