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article imageHoney bees may be able to detect cancer on patients' breath

By Owen Weldon     Nov 25, 2013 in Health
Inscentinel, a UK firm that specializes in researching insects, performed some research that concluded that honey bees may be able to be trained to detect certain early-stage cancers in people.
According to Mashable, Susana Soares, a Portuguese designer, used the breakthrough and created a glass device that uses honey bees and patients' breaths.
Soares said that the glass device has two chambers, one that serves as the diagnostic space, and then there is a bigger chamber, where trained bees are kept for a short length of time necessary for them to detect a patient's general health. A patient will exhale into the smaller chamber, and then the honey bees will rush into it if they detect a certain odor on the breath. The bees will sniff out the odor that they were trained to target.
According to ZeeNews, the honey bees are trained by exposing them to smell, as well as by feeding them sugar. The trainers do this because it helps the bees associate the odor with a food reward.
Bees have a super-sensitive sense of smell, and this is why they can detect odors that humans cannot detect.
More about Honey bees, Bees, Breath, Cancer
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