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Single gene separates queen from workers
Date:1/29/2014

These include solitary leaf cutter bees, communal sweat bees and social bumble bees.

"The pollen baskets are much less elaborate or completely absent in bees that are less socially complex," Huang said. "We conclude that the evolution of pollen baskets is a major innovation among social insects and is tied directly to more-complex social behaviors."

Future research by Huang may pursue investigating how bees could be improved to become better pollinators. While this won't provide a solution to bee colony collapse disorder, it could provide an option for improving the shrinking population of bees' pollen-collecting capacity.


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Contact: Layne Cameron
Layne.cameron@cabs.msu.edu
517-353-8819
Michigan State University
Source:Eurekalert  

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