The glomerular code for odor representation is species specific in the honeybee Apis mellifera

Nat Neurosci. 1999 May;2(5):473-8. doi: 10.1038/8144.


Odors are coded by glomerular activity patterns in the insect antennal lobe (AL) and in the mammalian olfactory bulb. We measured glomerular responses to 30 different odors in the AL of honeybees using calcium-sensitive dyes. By subsequently staining glomeruli and identifying individual glomerular outlines, we were able to compare the patterns between animals. Regardless of whether the odors were mixtures or pure substances, environmental odors or pheromones, their representations were highly conserved among individuals. Therefore, it may be possible to create a functional atlas of the AL in which particular molecular receptive ranges are attributed to each glomerulus.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bees / physiology*
  • Odorants*
  • Olfactory Bulb / physiology*
  • Sense Organs / physiology*
  • Species Specificity