Bee venom is the poison ejected from the poison sac of the bee sting when a bee stings. It is synthesised by the venom glands of worker and queen bees.
- It is a clear liquid with a sharp bitter taste and aromatic odour.
- Bee venom contains about 40% dry substance and hardens fast when in contact with the air.
- It contains water, peptides (mellitin – 50%, hyper and MCD (Mast cell degranulating peptides) apamine, histamine, dopamine and minimine.
- Enzymes: Phospholipases A and Hyaluronidase
- Phospholipases A splits lecithin - a phospholipids which is widely spread in the body, turning it into lysolecithin which degenerates cell membranes.
- Hyaluronidase splits the hyaluronic acid – a constituent element of the fundamental substance of the conjunctive tissue, thereby favouring the spread of the active factors of the bee venom throughout the body.
- Its specific gravity is 1.313 and pH = 4.5.
- Bee venom is destroyed by digesting and oxidising enzymes, and is readily soluble in water and acids but is insoluble in alcohol.