Mitochondrial structure of Eastern honeybee populations from Syria, Lebanon and Iraq
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- Alburaki, M., Moulin, S., Legout, H. et al. Apidologie (2011) 42: 628. doi:10.1007/s13592-011-0062-4
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Honeybees (Apis mellifera) from Syria (n = 1,624), Lebanon (n = 177), and Iraq (n = 35) were collected for genetic analysis. These samples were analyzed by the cleaved amplified polymorphisms technique using mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) as a molecular marker in their COI–COII intergenic region (Cytochrome Oxidase I and II). Polymerase chain reaction amplicons (500–950 bp) were subjected to restriction analysis by DraI enzyme. The restriction profiles were analyzed and compared with the existing mtDNA markers on polyacrylamide gels. Sixteen new haplotypes were identified, 14 of them on the African lineage A, one new haplotype on the North Mediterranean lineage C and one other on the West Mediterranean lineage M. DNA sequences of all these haplotypes were subsequently determined. We also identified five other haplotypes that had been described in a previous study. These five haplotypes were renamed and grouped more appropriately with the subgroup Z, rather than with the Oriental lineage O. The sequence structures of these novel haplotypes clearly display the specific characteristics of the African branch (A). However, they differ from the African haplotypes by a new restriction site; therefore, they have been moved into a new subgroup. We conclude that A. mellifera syriaca subspecies does not belong to the Oriental lineage O, but is situated geographically in an area of contact between the A and O lineages.