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MOSAR -Méthodes et Outils pour la Sélection d'Abeilles Résistantes à Varroa

Abstract : Varroa destructor is one of the main pests of the honeybee Apis mellifera, causing severe colony losses worldwide. Chemical treatments are available to reduce infestation, but they are currently experiencing significant limits. Thus, breeding and selection of bees naturally resistant to Varroa appears as a very promising solution. Several selection criteria for Varroa resistance have been developed and validated by research laboratories. The first objective of this project was therefore to provide technical references to professional beekeepers in order to implement these measures in a relevant manner under production conditions. However, until now, there is no method to estimate the resistance potential of a colony with a simple, reliable, rapid way and without a high rate of parasitism. MOSAR therefore also had the objective of developing new tools for technicians and beekeepers: the development of a simple phenotyping system of VSH behavior ans the search for genetic markers of resistance. This work began with the evaluation under conventional beekeeping production conditions of methods for evaluating the resistance of colonies to Varroa mite developed and validated under experimental conditions. The monitoring and phenotyping of 120 colonies throughout the project identified all the advantages and disadvantages of each method for large-scale implementation. The expertise acquired also made it possible to optimize these methods for use by beekeepers while maintaining the reliability essential for use in breeding. Technical sheets presenting these different criteria, detailing the equipment and skills required, as well as the different stages and critical points were widely distributed. At the same time, the development of a method using chemical compounds to estimate the resistance of a colony to Varroa has made significant progress. Likewise, the search for genetic markers of Varroa resistance relied on the MOSAR project to progress on several methodological aspects. This project has already paved the way for the integration of resistance criteria to Varroa in breeding programs used in beekeeping and the additional work in progress should amplify this impact over time.
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Submitted on : Thursday, March 4, 2021 - 4:37:06 PM
Last modification on : Friday, June 4, 2021 - 2:40:24 PM
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Benjamin Basso, Sonia Eynard, Alain Vignal, Maxime Beguin, Anne-Laure Guirao, et al.. MOSAR -Méthodes et Outils pour la Sélection d'Abeilles Résistantes à Varroa. Innovations Agronomiques, INRAE, 2021, 82, pp.229-245. ⟨10.15454/zna6-4g12⟩. ⟨hal-03159732⟩



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