harrybo6
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I've been researching the venom that bullet ant's have and its called poneratoxin. I want to know why this venom causes so much pain in humans, like that of a gunshot. I know that poneratoxin inhibits nicotinic synaptic transmission in the central nervous system as well a affecting the excitability of muscle fibres and nerves by changing the kinetics of the voltage-dependant sodium ion channels ( in easy terms it inhibits (voltage-depen.... ion channels).
But why does it cause so much pain in biological terms?
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macpatgh-Sheldon
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This relatively recently (last 20 years odd) discovered toxin prolongs the duration of the action potential as well as shortening the refractory period (the short interval [normally] after an action potential when a new action potential relatively or absolutely cannot occur).

These changes mean that conduction of an impulse along a nerve is prolonged AND more impulses can occur sequentially and consecutively. When this affects an afferent (sensory or one carrying impulses from the periphery towards the CNS) neurone, particularly one arising from a free nerve ending (a pain receptor), the predictable result is an intense and persistent pin sensation.
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