Elizabeth Pennisi
January 30 2020

The world’s honey bees are facing an unprecedented crisis. Since the 1940s, the number of honey bee hives in the United States has dropped from 6 million to 2.5 million. A combination of colony-killing mites, viral pathogens, and possibly pesticides is largely to blame. Now, researchers are tapping an unusual ally in the fight to bring the bees back: a bacterium that lives solely in their guts. By genetically modifying the bacterium to trick the mite or a virus to destroy some of its own DNA, scientists have improved bee survival in the lab—and killed many of the mites that were parasitizing the insects.

Read more: https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2020...ble-honey-bees