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  • Evan Palmer-Young

    Sun Oct 29 2023

    Antiparasitic effects of three floral volatiles on trypanosomatid infection in honey bees


    Trypanosomatid gut parasites are common in pollinators and costly for social bees. The recently described honey bee trypanosomatid Lotmaria passim is widespread, abundant, and correlated with colony losses in some studies. The potential for amelioration of infection by antimicrobial plant compounds has been thoroughly studied for closely related trypanosomatids of humans and is an area of active research in bumble bees, but remains relatively unexplored in honey bees. We recently identified several floral volatiles that inhibited growth of L. passim in vitro. Here, we tested the dose-dependent effects of four such compounds on infection, mortality, and food consumption in parasite-inoculated honey bees. We found that diets containing the monoterpenoid carvacrol and the phenylpropanoids cinnamaldehyde and eugenol at > 10-fold the inhibitory concentrations for cell cultures reduced infection, with parasite numbers decreased by > 90 % for carvacrol and cinnamaldehyde and > 99 % f


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