Free Access
Volume 28, Number 2, 1997
Page(s) 85 - 90
Apidologie 28 (1997) 85-90
DOI: 10.1051/apido:19970205

Comparison of the dietary and tissue sterols of the greater wax moth, Galleria mellonella (L)

M.F. Feldlaufera, D.J. Harrisonb and K.R. Wilzer Jra

a  Bee Research Laboratory, Bldg 476 BARC-East
b  Diet and Human Performance Laboratory, Beltsville, MD 20705, USA

Abstract - The neutral sterols of the greater wax moth Galleria mellonella were determined and compared to the sterols isolated from the used brood comb upon which the insects were reared. Analysis by gas-liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry revealed that used brood comb contained primarily 28- and 29-carbon sterols, with cholesterol accounting for less than 1% of the total sterols detected. This differed considerably from the insect, where cholesterol comprised over 85% of the tissue sterols. These results indicate the wax moth is able to convert dietary 24-alkylsterols to cholesterol. The potential for using inhibitors of sterol metabolism to control G mellonella is discussed.

Key words: Galleria mellonella / neutral sterols / cholesterol / chemical control / parasite / Apis mellifera