sublethal effects of neonicotinoids on the honeybee brain


Sublethal effects of neonicotinoids on the honeybee brain: from single neuron imaging to colony studies

This interdisciplinary project is investigating sublethal effects of neonicotinoids on the bee olfactory system, which plays a major role in bee orientation, floral recognition, and social communication. A team of neuroscientists, biologists, physicists, entomologists, and beekeepers studies possible influences at several scales: at the microscopic level, starting at the very periphery of the odour perception pathway at the antennas, possible modification in odour transduction will be evaluated with an electrophysiological approach. Alteration of the odour coding will be study within the honeybee brain by in vivo functional neuroimaging using two-photon microscopy. This allows the observation of direct effects of acute and chronic exposure along the olfactory information processing pathway. Behavioural experiments in the laboratory will investigate consequences of these neuroplastic changes to single animal behaviour, investigating the animals' ability to learn and memorize odorants, particularly pheromones, essential for their social interaction, and flower volatiles, guiding bees to blooming plants. Finally, the team will evaluate the consequences within honeybee colonies by monitoring in field studies possible changes in foraging behaviour, hive organization, communication, and performances in various colony-specific tasks.


8th EurBee Congress of Apidology

8th EurBee Congress of Apidology

The STEPHANIE collaboration was well represented at the 8th EurBee Congress of Apidology held in Ghent, Belgium, September 18 – 20


Oral presentations

In vivo imaging of neonicotinoid influence on odour processing in the honeybee brainAndrione M., Cabirol A., Fayolle M., Zanini D., Zanon M., Vallortigara G., Antolini R., Haase A.
Imidacloprid diffusion route: from apple orchard to the honey bee colony matricesMalagnini V., di Prisco G., Zanotelli L., Nazzi F., Annoscia D., Tonidandel L., Colombo R., Serra G., Boi M., Fontana P., Angeli G.


Neonicotinoids affect brain structural plasticity and olfactory memory in honey bees - Cabirol A., Fayolle M., Haase A.
Monitoring of honeybee colonies exposed to pesticide contamination in apple orchards and vineyards by means of Melixa systems - Fontana P., Zanotelli L., Malagnini V., Tonidandel L., Benedetti M., Angeli G.
Natural comb honeybee management in frame hives for professional beekeeping - Fontana P., Malagnini V., Zanotelli L.



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