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4 July 2017 Tracking the Genetic Stability of a Honey Bee (Hymenoptera: Apidae) Breeding Program With Genetic Markers
Lelania Bourgeois, Lorraine Beaman
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A genetic stock identification (GSI) assay was developed in 2008 to distinguish Russian honey bees from other honey bee stocks that are commercially produced in the United States. Probability of assignment (POA) values have been collected and maintained since the stock release in 2008 to the Russian Honey Bee Breeders Association. These data were used to assess stability of the breeding program and the diversity levels of the contemporary breeding stock through comparison of POA values and genetic diversity parameters from the initial release to current values. POA values fluctuated throughout 2010–2016, but have recovered to statistically similar levels in 2016 (POA(2010) = 0.82, POA(2016) = 0.74; P= 0.33). Genetic diversity parameters (i.e., allelic richness and gene diversity) in 2016 also remained at similar levels when compared to those in 2010. Estimates of genetic structure revealed stability (FST(2009/2016) = 0.0058) with a small increase in the estimate of the inbreeding coefficient (FIS(2010) = 0.078, FIS(2016) = 0.149). The relationship among breeding lines, based on genetic distance measurement, was similar in 2008 and 2016 populations, but with increased homogeneity among lines (i.e., decreased genetic distance). This was expected based on the closed breeding system used for Russian honey bees. The successful application of the GSI assay in a commercial breeding program demonstrates the utility and stability of such technology to contribute to and monitor the genetic integrity of a breeding stock of an insect species.

Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America 2017. This work is written by US Government employees and is in the public domain in the US.
Lelania Bourgeois and Lorraine Beaman "Tracking the Genetic Stability of a Honey Bee (Hymenoptera: Apidae) Breeding Program With Genetic Markers," Journal of Economic Entomology 110(4), 1419-1423, (4 July 2017).
Received: 27 March 2017; Accepted: 30 May 2017; Published: 4 July 2017

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