2.5.2. Availability and recommended reference isolates

Aspergillus has been deposited in various fungal culture collections, such as USDA-ARSEF, ATCC and CBS (see link below). None of the isolates deposited so far have been isolated from honey bees, neither larvae nor adults, but from sources such as plant material, soil, vertebrates and invertebrates. USDA-ARSEF is a collection of Entomopathogenic fungi, thus the majority of isolated deposited there originate from insects or other arthropods. It is possible to retrieve Aspergillus isolates from hymenoptera; solitary megachilid bees (Osmia lignaria and Megachile rotundata) and formicine ants (Anoplolepsis longipes and Solenopsis invicta).

Limited work has been performed with stonebrood, thus it is difficult to recommend a specific reference strain. A reference strain can be chosen based on its pathobiological properties (to honey bees or at least Hymenoptera); as in Vojvodic et al. (2011a) where an Asp. flavus strain isolated from an infected honey bee larvae was used to infect in vitro reared honey bee larvae. This particular strain is unfortunately lost. However, the reference strain could be based on its geographical origin or type specimen.

Aspergillus is classified as an opportunistic human pathogen, and thus some countries will need an import permit and proof that the laboratory is accredited to handle it.