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Biochemical studies on flight muscles of the genus Apis

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Journal of Apicultural Research
Vol. 28 (3) pp. 136-141
June 1989
Article Title

Biochemical studies on flight muscles of the genus Apis


P. C. Dulta And L. R. Verma


In the present investigations, the extraction and quantitative estimation of fuel sources and enzyme activities in the thoracic flight muscles of different species of the genus Apis and two ecotypes (Himachali and Kashmiri) of Apis cerana were done in summer (active) and winter (inactive) seasons. Glycogen was the major fuel source in the flight muscles of the different species of honeybees, and the ecotypes of A. ceralla. The amounts of glycogen, total lipids, glycogen phosphorylase (degradation and synthesis), succinic dehydrogenase and ex-glycerophosphate dehydrogenase per mg of thoracic flight muscle (fresh weight) of the 4 species of honeybee and two ecotypes of A. ceralla followed the pattern, A. dorsata > A. mellifera > A. ceralla > A. florea, P < 0.01; A.c. Kashmiri > A.c. Himachali, P < 0.05. The exceptions were that in the winter season, there were no significant differences (P > 0.05) in the amounts of total lipids of A. mellifera and A. ceralla,. Glycogen phosphorylase (synthesis) of A. dorsata and A. mellifera,. succinic dehydrogenase of A. ceralla and A. florea, and Kashmiri and Himachali bees; and ex-glycerophosphate dehydrogenase of A. ceralla and A. florea. Moreover, the amounts of glycogen, total lipids and activities of all the enzymes were significantly higher (P < 0.01) in summer than in winter, for all the species and ecotypes with the exception that the activity of α-glycerophosphate dehydrogenase was not significantly different in summer and winter seasons in A. florea.


Bee flight, flight muscles, glycogen, thoratic muscle,

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