Perception of pain in simple nervous systems (2014–2017)

Research over the past twenty years has revealed that cognitive behaviour in honeybees is much more sophisticated than hitherto assumed. The next frontier is to investigate whether these creatures are capable of experiencing pain. This study will measure the concentrations of biogenic amines and peptides in the haemolymph of injured honeybees ,and the preferences of wounded individuals for pain killers to investigate whether bees are capable of experiencing a sensation of pain. If the answer is positive, insects may provide new and simple models for the study of pain, and the results could lead to the formulation of guidelines for ethical experimentation with certain classes of invertebrates.
Grant type:
ARC Discovery Projects
Funded by:
Australian Research Council