Apitoxin: The Bee Sting Venom
Apitoxin, or honey bee venom, is a bitter colourless liquid. Its active portion is a mixture of proteins, which causes local inflammation and acts as an anticoagulant. A honeybee can inject 0.1 mg of venom via its stinger. It may have similarities to sea nettle toxin.
One of the main component is Melittin amounting to 52% of venom peptides.
Other components are:
- Apamin increases cortisol production in the adrenal gland. mild neurotoxin.
- Adolapin,contributing 2–5% of the peptides, acts as an anti-inflammatory and analgesic because it blocks cyclooxygenase.
- Phospholipase A2 amounts to 10–12% of peptides and it is the most destructive component of apitoxin. It is an enzyme which degrades the phospholipids which cellular membranes are made of. It also causes decreased blood pressure and inhibits blood coagulation. Phospholipase A2 activates arachidonic acid which is metabolized in thecyclooxygenase-cycle to form prostaglandins. Prostaglandins regulate the body’s inflammatory response.
- Hyaluronidase contributing 1–3% of peptides dilates the capillaries causing the spread of inflammation.
- Histamine contributing 0.5–2% and is involved in the allergic response.
- Dopamine and noradrenaline which contribute 1–2% increase pulse rate.
- Protease-inhibitors contribute 2% and act as anti-inflammatory agents and stop bleeding.
- Tertiapin - No idea what this is.