Bees need honey's natural pharmaceuticals

Ingredients trigger insects' genes for detoxification and immune defenses

By Susan Milius, 16:54 PM April 29, 2013

Honey is more than a sweet treat to bees. It turns out that it doses honeybees with certain compounds that switch on their detox defenses.

Instead of relying on their own honey for food during the winter, today’s commercially kept honeybees often get fed sugar substitutes and protein supplements. The sugar sources such as high-fructose corn syrup may be missing something helpful, however. New tests find compounds in honey that trigger surges of activity in genes needed for detoxifying chemi...

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