Effects of 10-Hydroxy-2-decenoic acid on the development of honey bee (Apis mellifera) larvae

publication date: Feb 26, 2014
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Journal of Apicultural Research
Vol. 53 (1) pp. 171-176
February 2014
Article Title

Effects of 10-Hydroxy-2-decenoic acid on the development of honey bee (Apis mellifera) larvae


Wen Xiang Wang, Liu Qing Tian, Qiang Huang, Xiao Bo Wu and Zhi Jiang Zeng


Honey bee queens and workers, both of which are female, develop from the same type of genome, but they have substantial morphological and physiological differences. Epigenetic modifications have been suggested to be involved in caste differentiation that is induced by royal jelly. 10-hydroxy-2(E)-decenoic acid (10-HDA), which can inhibit histone deacetylation, is a main component of royal jelly. In this study newly hatched larvae were artificially fed with diets containing 1.10%, 1.70%, 2.30%, 2.90% 10-HDA, referred to as control (C), treatment 1 (T1), treatment 2 (T2) and treatment 3 (T3), respectively, to study its effects on larval development. Compared to the control group, the weight of emerged adults was significantly reduced in the 10-HDA-treated groups. The expression level of the histone deacetylase 3 (HDAC3) gene was significantly up-regulated in the 10-HDA-treated groups than in the control group. The expression level of DNA methyltranferase 3 (DNMT3) gene was initially down-regulated, but subsequently up-regulated with increasing 10-HDA concentration. The results suggested 10-HDA not only reduces the weight of the newly emerged workers but also regulates activation of HDAC3 and DNMT3 that control epigenetic changes.


honey bee, 10-HDA, histone acetylation, DNA methylation

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