Connect with us

Honeybees Can “Smell” Lung Cancer: A New Frontier in Early Detection


Credit: Unsplash

In a groundbreaking discovery, scientists have found that honeybees possess the remarkable ability to detect the subtle scents of lung cancer. This revelation, published in the June 4 edition of Biosensors and Bioelectronics, highlights the potential of using honeybees as living sensors for early disease detection, offering a new, innovative approach to diagnosing lung cancer.

Debajit Saha, a neural engineer at Michigan State University, and his team have harnessed the extraordinary olfactory capabilities of honeybees to distinguish between the breath of healthy individuals and those with lung cancer. By connecting the brains of live bees to electrodes and exposing them to different scents, the researchers recorded distinct brain activity patterns — a unique neural fingerprint for each scent.

“It’s very clear — like day and night — whether [a bee] is responding to a chemical or not,” says Saha. The study’s findings demonstrate that bees can accurately differentiate between the breath of healthy individuals and that of lung cancer patients with a success rate of at least 93%.

Read more