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Risk assessment of honey bee stressors based on in silico analysis of molecular interactions


A global decline of the honey bee Apis mellifera has been observed in the last decades. This pollinator plays a fundamental role in food production and the economy in Europe. The decline of honey bee colonies is linked to several stressors, including pesticides. The current pesticide risk assessment of honey bees in Europe focuses on lethal effects and lacks reflection on sublethal effects. A better understanding of the consequences that exposure to these chemicals has on honey bees is still needed. In this context, the aim of this European Food Risk Assessment Fellowship Programme fellowship project has been to use in silico methodologies, such as virtual screening, as a first step to identify possible interactions at the molecular level between A. mellifera proteins and pesticide ligands. For this purpose, a docking study of the proteins from A. mellifera and pesticide ligands extracted from online databases has been performed by using the software Autodock Vina. The results obtained were a ranking based on the predicted affinity of the pesticides for specific and non‐specific binding sites on bee macromolecules. These results were compared with data obtained from the literature and linked to potential sublethal effects. Finally, a risk assessment analysis of the identified molecular stressors of honey bees was performed. The results of this study are considered a starting point to identify new sources of possible stress for honey bees and thereby contribute to the overall understanding of the honey bee decline.

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06/06/2016 - 11:11
Nuovo componente inserito: Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil
29/05/2016 - 10:04
Nuovo componente inserito: Linum Usitatissimum seed oil Error
27/05/2016 - 16:38
Nuovo componente inserito: Soybean oil


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