Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Testing biological treatment for pathogens that are killing honeybees and bats

Date:
June 19, 2014
Source:
Georgia State University
Summary:
A researcher is studying a new, biological treatment for bacterial and fungal pathogens that are killing honeybees and bats in record numbers. He is testing how effective Rhodococcus rhodochrous, a species of bacteria, is in fighting pathogens affecting honeybees and bats.

A researcher at Georgia State University is studying a new, biological treatment for bacterial and fungal pathogens that are killing honeybees and bats in record numbers.

Dr. Christopher Cornelison, a postdoctoral researcher, is testing how effective Rhodococcus rhodochrous, a species of bacteria, is in fighting pathogens affecting honeybees and bats.

In honeybees, Chalkbrood disease has contributed to the number of managed honeybee colonies in the U.S. being cut in half, a phenomenon known as Colony Collapse Disorder. Since 2006, White-Nose Syndrome has killed an estimated 7 million bats in North America, the steepest wildlife decline in the past century.

Cornelison grows the bacteria under certain conditions that enable them to inhibit the growth of fungi responsible for these diseases. The approach is unique because the bacteria do not need to make physical contact, unlike many probiotics. It's also non-toxic, allowing the honey to be edible for human consumption.

"Our bacteria produce a volatile chemical that's dispersed through the air and tremendously inhibits the growth of fungal and bacterial pathogens," Cornelison said.

Honeybees and bats are key to the ecosystem. One of every three bites of food in America is related to honeybee pollination, according to the United States Department of Agriculture. Many crops such as almonds and other tree nuts, berries, fruits and vegetables depend on pollination by honeybees.

Bats play a crucial role in pest control. A single brown bat will eat its body mass equivalent in insects in one summer night, Cornelison said.

"If these species go extinct, we're losing something that we don't even comprehend the value of right now," he said.

Cornelison has achieved positive results in cell studies. In honeybees, no negative effects were found in toxicity trials exposing bees to the bacteria in the air or in their honey.

In bats, Cornelison found the bacteria slow fungal growth and permanently eliminated spore germination. In collaboration with University of California-Davis, he found the bacteria prevented the spread of fungi on bat skin without touching the skin.

Cornelison's research is funded by the U.S. Forest Service and Bat Conservation International.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Georgia State University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Georgia State University. "Testing biological treatment for pathogens that are killing honeybees and bats." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 June 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140619125036.htm>.
Georgia State University. (2014, June 19). Testing biological treatment for pathogens that are killing honeybees and bats. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140619125036.htm
Georgia State University. "Testing biological treatment for pathogens that are killing honeybees and bats." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140619125036.htm (accessed October 21, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Cadaver Dogs Aid Search for More Victims of Suspected Indiana Serial Killer

Cadaver Dogs Aid Search for More Victims of Suspected Indiana Serial Killer

Reuters - US Online Video (Oct. 21, 2014) Police in Gary, Indiana are using cadaver dogs to search for more victims after a suspected serial killer confessed to killing at least seven women. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
White Lion Cubs Unveiled to the Public

White Lion Cubs Unveiled to the Public

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Oct. 21, 2014) Visitors to Belgrade zoo meet a pair of three-week-old lion cubs for the first time. Tara Cleary reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
'Cadaver Dog' Sniffs out Human Remains

'Cadaver Dog' Sniffs out Human Remains

AP (Oct. 21, 2014) Where's a body buried? Buster's nose can often tell you. He's a cadaver dog, specially trained to find human remains and increasingly being used by law enforcement and accepted in courts. These dogs are helping solve even decades-old mysteries. (Oct. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
White Lion Cubs Born in Belgrade Zoo

White Lion Cubs Born in Belgrade Zoo

AFP (Oct. 20, 2014) Two white lion cubs, an extremely rare subspecies of the African lion, were recently born at Belgrade Zoo. They are being bottle fed by zoo keepers after they were rejected by their mother after birth. Duration: 00:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins