Neonicotinoids target distinct nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and neurons, leading to differential risks to bumblebees

Christopher Moffat, Stephen T. Buckland, Andrew Samson, Robin McArthur, Victor Chamosa Pino, Karen A. Bollan, Jeffrey T.-J. Huang, Christopher Connolly (Lead / Corresponding author)

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Abstract

There is growing concern over the risk to bee populations from neonicotinoid insecticides and the long-term consequences of reduced numbers of insect pollinators to essential ecosystem services and food security. Our knowledge of the risk of neonicotinoids to bees is based on studies of imidacloprid and thiamethoxam and these findings are extrapolated to clothianidin based on its higher potency at nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. This study addresses the specificity and consequences of all three neonicotinoids to determine their relative risk to bumblebees at field-relevant levels (2.5 ppb). We find compound-specific effects at all levels (individual cells, bees and whole colonies in semi-field conditions). Imidacloprid and clothianidin display distinct, overlapping, abilities to stimulate Kenyon cells, indicating the potential to differentially influence bumblebee behavior. Bee immobility was induced only by imidacloprid, and an increased vulnerability to clothianidin toxicity only occurred following chronic exposure to clothianidin or thiamethoxam. At the whole colony level, only thiamethoxam altered the sex ratio (more males present) and only clothianidin increased queen production. Finally, both imidacloprid and thiamethoxam caused deficits in colony strength, while no detrimental effects of clothianidin were observed. Given these findings, neonicotinoid risk needs to be considered independently for each compound and target species.
Original languageEnglish
Article number24764
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalScientific Reports
Volume6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 28 Apr 2016

Fingerprint

Nicotinic Receptors
Bees
Neurons
Aptitude
Food Supply
Sex Ratio
Insecticides
Ecosystem
Insects
((E)-1-(2-chloro-1,3-thiazol-5-ylmethyl)-3-methyl-2-nitroguanidine)
thiamethoxam
imidacloprid
Population

Keywords

  • Ecosystem services
  • Environmental impact

Cite this

Moffat, Christopher ; Buckland, Stephen T. ; Samson, Andrew ; McArthur, Robin ; Chamosa Pino, Victor ; Bollan, Karen A. ; Huang, Jeffrey T.-J. ; Connolly, Christopher. / Neonicotinoids target distinct nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and neurons, leading to differential risks to bumblebees. In: Scientific Reports. 2016 ; Vol. 6. pp. 1-10.
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abstract = "There is growing concern over the risk to bee populations from neonicotinoid insecticides and the long-term consequences of reduced numbers of insect pollinators to essential ecosystem services and food security. Our knowledge of the risk of neonicotinoids to bees is based on studies of imidacloprid and thiamethoxam and these findings are extrapolated to clothianidin based on its higher potency at nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. This study addresses the specificity and consequences of all three neonicotinoids to determine their relative risk to bumblebees at field-relevant levels (2.5 ppb). We find compound-specific effects at all levels (individual cells, bees and whole colonies in semi-field conditions). Imidacloprid and clothianidin display distinct, overlapping, abilities to stimulate Kenyon cells, indicating the potential to differentially influence bumblebee behavior. Bee immobility was induced only by imidacloprid, and an increased vulnerability to clothianidin toxicity only occurred following chronic exposure to clothianidin or thiamethoxam. At the whole colony level, only thiamethoxam altered the sex ratio (more males present) and only clothianidin increased queen production. Finally, both imidacloprid and thiamethoxam caused deficits in colony strength, while no detrimental effects of clothianidin were observed. Given these findings, neonicotinoid risk needs to be considered independently for each compound and target species.",
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author = "Christopher Moffat and Buckland, {Stephen T.} and Andrew Samson and Robin McArthur and {Chamosa Pino}, Victor and Bollan, {Karen A.} and Huang, {Jeffrey T.-J.} and Christopher Connolly",
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Neonicotinoids target distinct nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and neurons, leading to differential risks to bumblebees. / Moffat, Christopher; Buckland, Stephen T.; Samson, Andrew; McArthur, Robin ; Chamosa Pino, Victor; Bollan, Karen A.; Huang, Jeffrey T.-J.; Connolly, Christopher (Lead / Corresponding author).

In: Scientific Reports, Vol. 6, 24764, 28.04.2016, p. 1-10.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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AU - Moffat, Christopher

AU - Buckland, Stephen T.

AU - Samson, Andrew

AU - McArthur, Robin

AU - Chamosa Pino, Victor

AU - Bollan, Karen A.

AU - Huang, Jeffrey T.-J.

AU - Connolly, Christopher

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N2 - There is growing concern over the risk to bee populations from neonicotinoid insecticides and the long-term consequences of reduced numbers of insect pollinators to essential ecosystem services and food security. Our knowledge of the risk of neonicotinoids to bees is based on studies of imidacloprid and thiamethoxam and these findings are extrapolated to clothianidin based on its higher potency at nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. This study addresses the specificity and consequences of all three neonicotinoids to determine their relative risk to bumblebees at field-relevant levels (2.5 ppb). We find compound-specific effects at all levels (individual cells, bees and whole colonies in semi-field conditions). Imidacloprid and clothianidin display distinct, overlapping, abilities to stimulate Kenyon cells, indicating the potential to differentially influence bumblebee behavior. Bee immobility was induced only by imidacloprid, and an increased vulnerability to clothianidin toxicity only occurred following chronic exposure to clothianidin or thiamethoxam. At the whole colony level, only thiamethoxam altered the sex ratio (more males present) and only clothianidin increased queen production. Finally, both imidacloprid and thiamethoxam caused deficits in colony strength, while no detrimental effects of clothianidin were observed. Given these findings, neonicotinoid risk needs to be considered independently for each compound and target species.

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