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Paraponera clavata, known as bullet ant, lives up to its name. Long, robust and clay in color, P. clavata is known not only for its size, but also for the sting it inflicts, the most painful of all insects. A new study published in Nature Communications by Australian scientists looks at how the injected neurotoxins target the victim's nerves. Their discovery is edifying. Unlike the toxins contained in the venom of snakes or scorpions, those of ants affect the body in a way never seen before. Pain can last for up to 24 hours, during which the victim's limb will be subject to temporary paralysis as well as uncontrollable shaking.
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