Correlation of biochemical and biophysical data from microbes grown from honeybee (apis mellifera) gut contents
The number of honeybee colonies has consistently been declining since the winter of 2006. The reason for this loss, which has been coined Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD), is not known. In this experiment, the culturable bacterial flora of the honeybee gut was examined to provide more information on the natural microbial populations of the honeybee. Since little data exists on the normal flora of the honeybee gut, being able to identify the normal flora could aid in identifying microbes associated with CCD. Honeybee gut content was extracted and cultured on standard microbiological media. Once bacteria were isolated, the microbe types were isolated for further analysis and characterization by biochemical and biophysical tests. Biochemical reactions were done on MacConkey and Triple Sugar Iron (TSI) agar and while spectral profiles were collected using Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption/Ionization Time of Flight (MALDI-TOF). All bacteria were found to have a rod morphology, with five being Gram-positive and two Gram-negative. One organism was found to be a yeast. MALDI-TOF displayed that four colony types had similar but unique mass spectrometry profiles. These data represent an effort to categorize microbe types found in honeybee gut by using a combination of biochemical techniques so that characterization of the Characterization of the Honeybee Gut microbes can eventually be realted to the health of honeybee colonies.
Colony collapse disorder