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Researchers Identify Virus Possibly Responsible for Declining Honeybee Population Using 454 Sequencing Technology from Roche
Date:9/6/2007

and are essential for the pollination of more than 90 fruit and vegetable crops worldwide. The economic value of these agricultural products is placed at more than $14.6 billion in the United States alone. In CCD, honeybee colonies inexplicably lose all of their worker bees. CCD has resulted in a loss of 50% to 90% of colonies in beekeeping operations across the United States. The observation that irradiated honeycombs from affected colonies could be repopulated with healthy bees, while non-sterilized combs could not, suggested an infectious basis for CCD. Suspected pathogens were screened for association with CCD by examination of samples collected from several sites over a period of three years.

"We are very pleased to see our technology applied to solve real-world problems. We are hopeful this latest research will help eliminate the threat of CCD to global agriculture" said Christopher McLeod, president of 454 Life Sciences. "The chief advantage of 454 Sequencing technology is how it quickly

enables researchers to identify the organisms present in complex environments without any advance knowledge of the sample."

CCD was first reported in the fall of 2006 in the Unites States. Since then, CCD has been reported in Germany, Switzerland, Spain, Portugal, Italy and Greece. A recent survey of 13 states by the Apiary Inspectors of America showed that over a quarter of U.S. beekeepers have lost, on average, half of their bee colonies between September 2006 and March 2007.

454 Life Sciences develops and commercializes novel instrumentation for high-throughput DNA sequencing. Specific applications include whole-genome sequencing, RNA analysis and ultra-deep sequencing of target genes. The hallmarks of 454 Sequencing(TM) are its simple, unbiased sample preparation and massively parallel sequencing, which makes large-scale scientific projects feasible and more affordable. During the last months, the technology proved its suitability in a lot of appli
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SOURCE 454 Life Sciences
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