Can Bees sting the Corona Virus?

Aayushi Vaish
2 min readMay 15, 2020

These days when the world’s leading vaccine makers , microbiologists and literally everyone are trying their very best to eliminate this global threat,even a single ray of hope is like an oasis for the lost traveler.

Bees play a vital role in pollination around the globe, they can also help in defeating our biggest foe.

Venom against Virus

It’s not a spider-man comic title by the way!

Animal or insect venom and their derivatives are the potential natural agents for innovative drug development against several major diseases, however many of their components and functions are fully unexplored.

Animal Venom has been used in the medical field from a very long time, whether its snake venom to create antivenom for snake bites or insect venom to fight against diseases like Herpes and Influenza etc.

Bee Venom is a cocktail of natural peptides with a diversity of biological activities.

Bee Venom is already used in a lot of medicinal applications, for rheumatoid arthritis etc. but recently, researchers have grown their interest towards its action against viruses.

A research paper published in December 2016, The Journal of Microbiology by Md Bashir Uddin, Byeong-Hoon Lee, Chamilani stated that the bee venom contains 18 components with medicinal use including melittin (MLT), phospholipase A2 (PLA2), and apamin etc.

Bee Venom possesses a lot of yet undiscovered antibacterial and antiviral properties. the research was based on testing the virus on an enveloped Influenza virus, the bee venom halted the replication of the virus and similar results were found for non-enveloped viruses too.

The bee venom actually has shown a potential virucidal mechanism.

The virucidal mechanism is an excellent combat technique for RNA-Protein based viruses like SARS, MERS, COVID-19. It actually attacks the protein shells (capsid) and destroys their genetic material so that the virus cannot replicate itself in the body.

Further testing on influenza A H1N1 infected mice showed great promise for the bee venom to be used in the treatment.

Not only that, but Melittin also showed a great promise against the deadly HIV, it can rip through the protective layers of the virus.

Melittin(MLT) fused with nano-particles works as the perfect combat machine in the treatment of HIV and if further research is done, it can possibly work as an agent in potential corona-virus vaccines.


Melittin(MLT) indeed shows a great potential to be a key ingredient in potential coronavirus vaccine. Interestingly, I was just discussing with my friend about honey bees and it struck me, can bee venom have some potential against the Virus? and Voila! I found some great researches regarding the same and penned this idea down.

The lock-down days are indeed tough times but we can all play our parts in defeating this enemy and making this all situation like a Movie.



Aayushi Vaish

An Explorer of the Infinite Multiverse . MS - Physics , Northeastern University.