Social Media Sidebar

Announcement

Please sign up, comment on articles and bring your friends!

Current poll

PlanetTech is asking:

What do you think about our new web site?

Love it, indeed
Really good solution
Same as old one
The old one was better
This is a new option

Quote of the day

We are all now connected by the Internet, like neurons in a giant brain.

 

Stephen Hawking

 

Bees dig a caffeine buzz too. But why?

RATE THIS! +10
Posted in Science on 10th Mar, 2013 01:01 AM by AlexMuller

Plants have a serious thing for bees and have evolved to go to great lengths to attract their buzzing pals. We know the sweetness of the nectar or the tantalising smell of flowers bring the bees in to get down to the business of pollination. But would you believe some plants actually have small doses of caffeine that have bees coming back again and again?

 

Anyone who has seen the line at Starbucks before work is sure to understand. We seem to get down to our business just a bit more efficiently.

 

The low doses of caffeine in certain floral nectar - such as citrus and coffee plants - appears to trigger enhanced memories in bees that brings them back to the plant again and again. That's not just good for the bee but it's also good for the plant - essentially ensuring regular pollination and creating an ecological bond between the two.

 

The connection was discovered by Dr. Geraldine Wright, neuroscientist at Newcastle University in England. She and her team started with experiments to see if bees associated door with a reward. They used sugar water and low doses of caffeine at the levels you'd find in plants to tempt them. The result was bees that formed a memory associated to the door that gave them the caffeine.

 

Even more interesting is the fact this wasn't just a quick hit. when exploring the long term effects the researchers found three-times as many bees remembered the scent that carried the caffeine reward 24 hours later, and twice as many remembering even 72 hours later. The researchers then tested the effects of tiny amounts of caffeine on the tiny little neurons in bee brains (Kenyon cells) and found the caffeine did increase sensitivity in those cells - which just happen to be related to learning and memory.

 

Before we rush to hook up the IV of coffee or straight caffeine, the researchers want to remind us that human brains and insect brains are different and may not necessarily work the same way to actually improve memory.



Read original article » Back to category

Comments



 

Recent headlines

  • Posted in Medicine on 2017-07-26 17:05:11
    Eye test could help diagnose autism..read more
    Posted in Science on 2017-07-26 16:55:24
    Cognitive cross-training enhances learning, study finds..read more
    Posted in Software on 2017-07-26 16:45:19
    AI Grant aims to fund the unfundable to advance AI and.....read more
    Posted in Medicine on 2017-07-25 15:53:01
    New blood test can check for 13 types of cancers..read more
    Posted in Science on 2017-07-25 15:47:06
    The Moon Is Seriously Loaded With Water, More Than We.....read more
Posted in Business on 2013-10-10 01:33
China is working towards a manned lunar mission in about.....read more
Posted in Business on 2013-10-20 07:17
Spacex says China is their main competitor for commercial.....read more
Posted in Software on 2013-10-20 06:43
Pirate Bay Browser Clocks 1,000,000 Downloads..read more
Posted in Medicine on 2013-10-10 02:10
Google reportedly investing hundreds of millions into new.....read more
Posted in Medicine on 2013-10-14 03:13
Endothelial Cells Can Repair and Regenerate Organs,.....read more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Spacex says China is their main competitor for commercial.....read more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Staring at Your Phone Could Be Making You Short Sighted..read more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Oculus Rift virtual reality headset coming to mobile, but.....read more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
China is working towards a manned lunar mission in about.....read more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Delivering drugs via nanoparticles to target mitochondria..read more

Recent Blog Posts

  • Posted by AlexMuller
    Nanoparticle vaccine shows potential as immunotherapy to fight.....read more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Obesity is top cause of preventable life-years lost, study shows..read more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Light can be utilized to control gene function..read more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Brain stimulation restores memory during lapses, research shows..read more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Wax worm caterpillar will eat plastic shopping bags: New.....read more

Login to your Account

Login to your PlanetTech Account here

Username:
Password:
Remember me
or

Create a New Account

You just need username and password

The following errors occured:
Username:
Email:
Password:
Verify password:
Remember me