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Insights into social insects from the genome of the honeybee Apis mellifera

Weinstock, G. M., Robinson, G. E., Gibbs, R. A., Worley, K. C., Evans, J. D., Maleszka, R., Robertson, H. M., Weaver, D. B., Beye, M., Bork, P., Elsik, C. G., Hartfelder, K., Hunt, G. J., Zdobnov, E. M., Amdam, G. V., Bitondi, M. M. G., Collins, Anita M., Cristino, A. S., Lattorff, H. M. G., Lobo, C. H., Moritz, R. F. A., Nunes, F. M. F., Page, R. E., Simoes, Z. L. P., Wheeler, D., Carninci, P., Fukuda, S., Hayashizaki, Y., Kai, C., Kawai, J., Sakazume, N., Sasaki, D., Tagami, M., Albert, S., Baggerman, G., Beggs, K. T., Bloch, G., Cazzamali, G., Cohen, M., Drapeau, M. D., Eisenhardt, D., Emore, C., Ewing, M. A., Fahrbach, S. E., Foret, S., Grimmelikhuijzen, C. J. P., Hauser, F., Hummon, A. B., Huybrechts, J., Jones, A. K., Kadowaki, T., Kaplan, N., Kucharski, R., Leboulle, G., Linial, M., Littleton, J. T., Mercer, A. R., Richmond, T. A., Rodriguez-Zas, S. L., Rubin, E. B., Sattelle, D. B., Schlipalius, D., Schoofs, L., Shemesh, Y., Sweedler, J. V., Velarde, R., Verleyen, P., Vierstraete, E., Williamson, M. R., Ament, S. A., Brown, S. J., Corona, M., Dearden, P. K., Dunn, W. A., Elekonich, M. M., Fujiyuki, T., Gattermeier, I., Gempe, T., Hasselmann, M., Kadowaki, T., Kage, E., Kamikouchi, A., Kubo, T., Kucharski, R., Kunieda, T., Lorenzen, M., Milshina, N. V., Morioka, M., Ohashi, K., Overbeek, R., Ross, C. A., Schioett, M., Shippy, T., Takeuchi, H., Toth, A. L., Willis, J. H., Wilson, M. J., Gordon, K. H. J., Letunic, I., Hackett, K. and Ranson, Hilary ORCID: (2006) 'Insights into social insects from the genome of the honeybee Apis mellifera'. Nature, Vol 443, Issue 7114, pp. 931-949.

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Here we report the genome sequence of the honeybee Apis mellifera, a key model for social behaviour and essential to global ecology through pollination. Compared with other sequenced insect genomes, the A. mellifera genome has high A+T and CpG contents, lacks major transposon families, evolves more slowly, and is more similar to vertebrates for circadian rhythm, RNA interference and DNA methylation genes, among others. Furthermore, A. mellifera has fewer genes for innate immunity, detoxification enzymes, cuticle-forming proteins and gustatory receptors, more genes for odorant receptors, and novel genes for nectar and pollen utilization, consistent with its ecology and social organization. Compared to Drosophila, genes in early developmental pathways differ in Apis, whereas similarities exist for functions that differ markedly, such as sex determination, brain function and behaviour. Population genetics suggests a novel African origin for the species A. mellifera and insights into whether Africanized bees spread throughout the New World via hybridization or displacement.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: drosophila-ninag oxidoreductase beetle tribolium-castaneum anopheles-gambiae transposable elements nuclear receptor gene-expression bombyx-mori statistical-analysis mariner transposons mitochondrial-DNA
Subjects: QU Biochemistry > Genetics > QU 470 Genetic structures
QX Parasitology > Insects. Other Parasites > QX 565 Hymenoptera (Bees. Wasps. Ants)
Faculty: Department: Groups (2002 - 2012) > Vector Group
Digital Object Identifer (DOI):
Depositing User: Sarah Lewis-Newton
Date Deposited: 28 Jul 2011 14:09
Last Modified: 30 Aug 2019 17:05


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