Bt Toxin Cry1Ie Causes No Negative Effects on Survival, Pollen Consumption, or Olfactory Learning in Worker Honey Bees (Hymenoptera: Apidae)

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Abstract or Summary

The honey bee (Apis mellifera L.) is a key nontarget insect in environmental risk assessments of insect-resistant genetically modified crops. In controlled laboratory conditions, we evaluated the potential effects of Cry1Ie toxin on survival, pollen consumption, and olfactory learning of young adult honey bees. We exposed worker bees to syrup containing 20, 200, or 20,000‚ÄČng/ml Cry1Ie toxin, and also exposed some bees to 48‚ÄČng/ml imidacloprid as a positive control for exposure to a sublethal concentration of a toxic product. Results suggested that Cry1Ie toxin carries no risk to survival, pollen consumption, or learning capabilities of young adult honey bees. However, during oral exposure to the imidacloprid treatments, honey bee learning behavior was affected and bees consumed significantly less pollen than the control and Cry1Ie groups.

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