Free access
Volume 28, Number 1, 1997
Page(s) 3 - 9
Apidologie 28 (1997) 3-9
DOI: 10.1051/apido:19970101

Guanine visualization: a new method for diagnosing tracheal mite infestation of honey bees

R. Mozes-Koch and U. Gerson

Department of Entomology, Faculty of Agriculture, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Rehovot 76100, Israel

Abstract - A new method for diagnosing tracheal mite infestation in honey bees is described. The method is based on the visualization of guanine, a purine which is the main end product of nitrogen metabolism in mites, but in bee excretions occurs at most in trace quantities. Thoraces of bees are homogenized in acidic or basic solutions, run on TLC plates and scanned by UV. The new assay was compared to the direct thoracic disk method and to the indirect ELISA method, and their relative advantages and disadvantages are discussed.

Key words: Apis mellifera / Acarapis woodi / diagnosis / guanine