Free access
Volume 37, Number 2, March-April 2006
Stingless bees: biology and management
Page(s) 259 - 274
Published online 22 June 2006
Apidologie 37 (2006) 259-274
DOI: 10.1051/apido:2006021

Molecular markers as a tool for population and evolutionary studies of stingless bees

Maria Cristina Ariasa, Rute Magalhães Britoa, Flávio de Oliveira Franciscoa, Geraldo Morettob, Favízia Freitas de Oliveirac, Daniela Silvestrea and Walter Steven Sheppardd

a  Departamento de Genética e Biologia Evolutiva, Instituto de Biociências, USP, São Paulo, SP, 05508-900, Brasil
b  Departamento de Ciências Naturais, Centro de Ciências Exatas e Naturais, FURB, Blumenau, SC, 89010-971, Brasil
c  Laboratório de Sistemática de Insetos (LASIS), Departamento de Ciências Biológicas, Universidade Estadual de Feira de Santana, BR 116, km 3, 44031-460, Feira de Santana, BA, Brasil
d  Department of Entomology, Washington State University, Pullman, WA 99164-6382, USA

(Received 30 November 2005 - revised 13 February 2006 - accepted 15 February 2006 - published online 22 June 2006)

Abstract - Molecular markers are widely used in biology to address questions related to ecology, genetics and evolution. In bees, molecular studies addressing those issues have focused on Apis and Apis mellifera. Here we describe examples where molecular markers from mtDNA and microsatellite analyses were applied to stingless bees species. The data obtained, although in some cases preliminary, have already proven useful to infer hypotheses about phylogeny, population dynamics, species validity and the evolution of this group of bees.

Key words: stingless bees / molecular marker / mitochondrial DNA / microsatellite / evolution / Apidae / Meliponini

© INRA, DIB-AGIB, EDP Sciences 2006