Drastic changes in temperature can interfere with the normal physiological and biochemical activities of bees. Temperature stress affects the endocrine system of bees and induces a series of stress responses. However, the changes that occur in hormones in bees that are exposed to environmental stress are not well understood. In this study, we analyzed the expression patterns of four genes by quantitative real time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) in Apis mellifera L. and Apis cerana F. (Hymenoptera: Apidae) at different temperatures and different treatment times. The expression of juvenile hormone esterase, vitellogenin, corticotropin-releasing hormone binding protein, and adipokinetic hormone receptor genes was found to be increasingly affected by an increase in temperature and treatment time. Temperature stress affects the endocrine system of bees, and endogenous hormones in bees can respond to environmental stimuli. Our findings provide a basis for determining the mechanisms by which insect endocrine systems adapt to high temperatures.
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Vol. 57 • No. 3