|Title||Evaluation of Suppressed Mite Reproduction (SMR) Reveals Potential for Varroa Resistance in European Honey Bees ( L.).|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2020|
|Authors||Mondet, F, Parejo, M, Meixner, MD, Costa, C, Kryger, P, Andonov, S, Servin, B, Basso, B, Bieńkowska, M, Bigio, G, Căuia, E, Cebotari, V, Dahle, B, Dražić, MMaja, Hatjina, F, Kovačić, M, Kretavicius, J, Lima, AS, Panasiuk, B, M Pinto, A, Uzunov, A, Wilde, J, Büchler, R|
|Date Published||2020 Sep 03|
In the fight against the mite, selective breeding of honey bee ( L.) populations that are resistant to the parasitic mite stands as a sustainable solution. Selection initiatives indicate that using the suppressed mite reproduction (SMR) trait as a selection criterion is a suitable tool to breed such resistant bee populations. We conducted a large European experiment to evaluate the SMR trait in different populations of honey bees spread over 13 different countries, and representing different honey bee genotypes with their local mite parasites. The first goal was to standardize and validate the SMR evaluation method, and then to compare the SMR trait between the different populations. Simulation results indicate that it is necessary to examine at least 35 single-infested cells to reliably estimate the SMR score of any given colony. Several colonies from our dataset display high SMR scores indicating that this trait is present within the European honey bee populations. The trait is highly variable between colonies and some countries, but no major differences could be identified between countries for a given genotype, or between genotypes in different countries. This study shows the potential to increase selective breeding efforts of resistant populations.