Thursday, March 14, 2019
BAHS Masters Student Presents Research
BAHS masters student Heather Llewellyn presented a poster at the annual meeting of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology in Tampa, Florida on January 3 -7, 2019. Her research entitled, "Sublethal effects of neonicotinoid pesticides on cellular stress in honeybees," was conducted in collaboration with BAHS alumna Erin Smith (Biology, pre-medical sciences, 2018) and Drs. Surmacz and Hranitz.
Honeybees are important pollinators of a wide variety of crops and are experiencing global declines. The losses of honey bee populations have been linked to a disorder known as Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD). In this phenomenon, worker bees disappear from the colony, leaving the brood unattended. While there is no single cause of CCD, sublethal doses of pesticides cause physiological and behavioral changes that adversely affect hive health. Heather's work showed that bees exposed to sublethal doses of imidacloprid, a commonly used neonicotinioid pesticide, showed elevations in heat shock proteins and oxidative enzymes that are characteristic of cellular stress, Heather earned her bachelor's degree in biology from Lock Haven University. She received clinical training in Medical Laboratory Science and is employed in the laboratory at Evangelical Community Hospital in Lewisburg, PA. Heather received a Professional Experience Grant to support her travel.