Insectes Sociaux

, Volume 56, Issue 1, pp 44–48

Construction and characterization of a BAC-library for a key pollinator, the bumblebee Bombus terrestris L.


    • Institute of Integrative Biology (IBZ)ETH Zurich
    • Institute of Evolutionary BiologyUniversity of Edinburgh
  • M. Muñoz Torres
    • Clemson University Genomics InstituteClemson University
  • C. Reber-Funk
    • Institute of Integrative Biology (IBZ)ETH Zurich
  • R. Schmid-Hempel
    • Institute of Integrative Biology (IBZ)ETH Zurich
  • J. Tomkins
    • Clemson Environmental Genomics LabClemson University
  • J. Gadau
    • School of Life SciencesArizona State University
  • P. Schmid-Hempel
    • Institute of Integrative Biology (IBZ)ETH Zurich
Reserach article

DOI: 10.1007/s00040-008-1034-1

Cite this article as:
Wilfert, L., Torres, M.M., Reber-Funk, C. et al. Insect. Soc. (2009) 56: 44. doi:10.1007/s00040-008-1034-1


The primitively social bumblebee Bombus terrestris is an ecological model species as well as an important agricultural pollinator. As part of the ongoing development of genomic resources for this model organism, we have constructed a publicly available bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) library from males of a field-derived colony. We have shown that this library has a high coverage, which allows any particular sequence to be retrieved from at least one clone with a probability of 99.7%. We have further demonstrated the library’s usefulness by successfully screening it with probes derived both from previously described B. terrestris genes and candidate genes from another bumblebee species and the honeybee. This library will facilitate genomic studies in B. terrestris and will allow for novel comparative studies in the social Hymenoptera.


Genomicsgene discoverybreedingsex determinationpollination

Copyright information

© Birkhäuser Verlag, Basel 2008