Navigation Links
A young brain for an old bee
Date:6/30/2009

We are all familiar with the fact that cognitive function declines as we get older. Moreover, recent studies have shown that the specific kind of daily activities we engage in during the course of our lives appears to influence the extent of this decline. A team of researchers from Technische Universitt Berlin are studying how division of labour among honey bees affects their learning performance as they age. Surprisingly, they have found that, by switching their social role, aging honey bees can keep their learning ability intact or even improve it. The scientists are planning to use them as a model to study general aging processes in the brain, and they even hope that they may provide some clues on how to prevent them. Dr. Ricarda Scheiner, leader of the research team, will present these findings at the Society of Experimental Biology Annual Meeting in Glasgow on Wednesday 1st July 2009.

The oldest bees in a colony are the foragers - a task that demands a high amount of energy. With increasing foraging duration, their capacity for associative learning was found to decrease. On the other hand, no decline was observed in nurse bees that remain inside the hive taking care of the brood and the queen, even though their age was the same as that of their foraging sisters. When the scientists artificially forced a subset of these foragers to revert to nursing tasks, they discovered that they learning performance improved again, demonstrating a remarkable plasticity in their brain circuits.

"The honey bee is a great model", explains Dr. Scheiner, "because we can learn a lot about social organisation from it and because it allows us to revert individuals into a 'younger' stage. If we remove all of the nurse bees of a colony, some of the foragers will revert to nursing behaviour and their brains become 'young' again. We thus hope to study the mechanisms responsible for age-dependent effects, like oxidative damage, and also to discover new ways to act against these aging processes."


'/>"/>

Contact: Cristian C. A. Bodo
Cristian.Bodo@kcl.ac.uk
44-794-258-7047
Society for Experimental Biology
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Meth exposure in young adults leads to long-term behavioral consequences
2. Ancient whale fall from Californias Año Nuevo Island one of youngest, most complete known
3. Ancient whale fall from Californias Ao Nuevo Island one of youngest, most complete known
4. Youngstown, Ohio Police Award Mobile Data Contract to BIO-key(R) International
5. Tufts University biologists link Huntingtons disease to health benefits in young
6. Alcohol and sleep restriction can affect young mens alertness and driving performance
7. 18 young scientists join EMBO Young Investigator network
8. Yale chemist receives NIH Young Investigator Award for antibody targeting
9. 2007 Albert Maucher Prize for Outstanding Young Geoscientists
10. Eat chocolate, drink wine, add fun to life: SLU geriatrician shares secrets of staying young
11. New book defines promising young field of adult neurogenesis
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
A young brain for an old bee
(Date:3/30/2017)... March 30, 2017  On April 6-7, 2017, Sequencing.com ... Genome hackathon at Microsoft,s headquarters in ... will focus on developing health and wellness apps that ... Hack the Genome is the first hackathon for ... world,s largest companies in the genomics, tech and health ...
(Date:3/27/2017)... 27, 2017  Catholic Health Services (CHS) has ... Society (HIMSS) Analytics for achieving Stage 6 on ... . In addition, CHS previously earned a place ... an electronic medical record (EMR). "HIMSS ... of EMR usage in an outpatient setting.  This ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... March 21, 2017   Neurotechnology , a ... technologies, today announced the release of the ... provides improved facial recognition using up to 10 ... single computer. The new version uses deep neural-network-based ... and it utilizes a Graphing Processing Unit (GPU) ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:8/15/2017)... ... August 15, 2017 , ... Any expert in stem cell research ... disciplines for more than half a century. Despite their essential roles in human ... widely known that molecular tags developed for this purpose also tag other, more abundant, ...
(Date:8/14/2017)... ... August 14, 2017 , ... Every ... Key researchers in the antibody community have recently come together to address this ... in the laboratory. , The team at Thermo Fisher Scientific ...
(Date:8/11/2017)... , ... August 11, 2017 , ... Algenist continues to ... formulation unlocking collagen like never before. , Collagen is the key structural element ... market with Liquid Collagen™, which include: , First to ...
(Date:8/10/2017)... Durham, NC (PRWEB) , ... August 09, 2017 , ... ... fractures. Almost half never recover well enough to live an independent lifestyle and, even ... , A new discovery by doctors at the University of California Davis Medical ...
Breaking Biology Technology: