Acute Imidacloprid Exposure Alters Mitochondrial Function in Bumblebee Flight Muscle and Brain

A - Papers appearing in refereed journals

Sargent, C., Ebanks, B., Hardy, I. C. W., Davies, T. G. E., Chakrabarti, L. and Stoger, R. 2021. Acute Imidacloprid Exposure Alters Mitochondrial Function in Bumblebee Flight Muscle and Brain. Frontiers in Insect Science. https://doi.org/10.3389/finsc.2021.765179

AuthorsSargent, C., Ebanks, B., Hardy, I. C. W., Davies, T. G. E., Chakrabarti, L. and Stoger, R.
Abstract

Mitochondria are intracellular organelles responsible for cellular respiration with one of their major roles in the production of energy in the form of ATP. Activities with increased energetic demand are especially dependent on efficient ATP production, hence sufficient mitochondrial function is fundamental. In bees, flight muscle and the brain have particularly high densities of mitochondria to facilitate the substantial ATP production required for flight activity and neuronal signalling. Neonicotinoids are systemic synthetic insecticides that are widely utilised against crop herbivores but have been reported to cause, by unknown mechanisms, mitochondrial dysfunction, decreasing cognitive function and flight activity among pollinating bees. Here we explore, using high-resolution respirometry, how the neonicotinoid imidacloprid may affect oxidative phosphorylation in the brain and flight muscle of the buff-tailed bumblebee, Bombus terrestris. We find that acute exposure increases routine oxygen consumption in the flight muscle of worker bees. This provides a candidate explanation for prior reports of early declines in flight activity following acute exposure. We further find that imidacloprid increases the maximum electron transport capacity in the brain, with a trend towards increased overall oxygen consumption. However, intra-individual variability is high, limiting the extent to which apparent effects of imidacloprid on brain mitochondria are shown conclusively. Overall, our results highlight the necessity to examine tissue-specific effects of imidacloprid on respiration and energy production.

KeywordsBombus terrestris; Mitochondria; Imidacloprid; Oxidative phosphorylation; High-resolution respirometry
Year of Publication2021
JournalFrontiers in Insect Science
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.3389/finsc.2021.765179
Open accessPublished as ‘gold’ (paid) open access
FunderBiotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council
Funder project or codeBBSRC Notts DTP
Publisher's version
Accepted author manuscript
Copyright license
CC BY
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online01 Dec 2021
Publication process dates
Accepted12 Nov 2021
ISSN 2673-8600
PublisherFrontiers Media SA

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