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VIABILITY ASSESSMENT AND CRYOPRESERVATION OF THE HONEY BEE (APIS MELLIFERA) PARASITE, NOSEMA CERANAE

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Title: VIABILITY ASSESSMENT AND CRYOPRESERVATION OF THE HONEY BEE (APIS MELLIFERA) PARASITE, NOSEMA CERANAE
Author: McGowan, Janine
Department: Department of Environmental Biology
Program: Environmental Biology
Advisor: Guzman, Ernesto
Abstract: Originally described from the Asian honey bee, Apis cerana, the microsporidian Nosema ceranae is an obligate, intracellular parasite that has recently been discovered infecting the western honey bee, Apis mellifera. More research on the biology of N. ceranae as well as on the impact it may have on A. mellifera is greatly needed. However, conducting studies on N. ceranae is not only dependent on seasonal availability of Nosema spores, but also on reliable methods for determining spore viability. This study presents the results of using cryogenics to provide long term storage of viable N. ceranae spores and a differential staining procedure that details how to use bright field microscopy with the fluorescent viability dye, propidium iodide (PI), and the fluorescent stain, 4', 6-diamidino-2-phenylindole (DAPI) to differentiate viable and nonviable spores. Using these methods, it was found that freezing N. ceranae at -70 °C in 10% glycerol yielded the lowest mean rate of spore mortality after thawing (24.2% ± 2.2).
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10214/3801
Date: 2012-04
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