Regulation of hemolymph osmolality in feral and domestic honeybees, Apis mellifera L. (Hymenoptera: Apidae)

Anita H. Atmowidjojo, Eric H. Erickson, Diana E. Wheeler, Allen C. Cohen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Experiments were conducted to compare the ability of unmanaged fetal and managed domestic honeybees in the arid Southwest to regulate hemolymph solutes, osmolality, and uric acid. Honeybees from feral and domestic colonies were desiccated (at 30°C and 0% humidity) for 2 h with undesiccated bees held as controls. Hemolymph osmolality, proteins, amino acid, and uric acid concentrations were analyzed. Hemolymph osmotic pressures of desiccated feral bees were significantly lower than those of domestic honeybees (P < 0.004). There was a significant difference in hemolymph protein concentrations between undesiccated and desiccated honeybees (P < 0.001). The hemolymph concentration of amino acids was significantly higher in undesiccated bees than in desiccated honeybees (P < 0.0031). There were no differences in uric acid concentrations between feral and domestic bees, and between desiccated and undesiccated honeybees. Hence, differences in temperature tolerance and water balance between feral and domestic honey bees are not explained by differential regulation of hemolymph osmolality, proteins, or free amino acids, or by regulation of uric acid excretion.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)227-233
Number of pages7
JournalComparative Biochemistry and Physiology - A Molecular and Integrative Physiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1999
Externally publishedYes


  • Apis mellifera
  • Feral honeybees
  • Hemolymph amino acids
  • Hemolymph proteins
  • Osmolality
  • Temperature tolerance
  • Uric acid
  • Water balance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Physiology
  • Molecular Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Regulation of hemolymph osmolality in feral and domestic honeybees, Apis mellifera L. (Hymenoptera: Apidae)'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this