The stinging of a scorpion may not be as painful as the bite of a spider, according to new research.
University of Sydney researchers found that the bites of scorpions and spiders caused inflammation in a region of the body that normally suppresses pain.
“It seems like there are things that the venom is able to do that we are not aware of,” Professor Matthew Johnson from the University of Sydney’s School of Veterinary Science said.
“What we’re finding is that this may be able to cause inflammation in areas that normally don’t show any inflammation.”
The findings are published in the Journal of Experimental Medicine.
It is unknown whether this particular venom may cause symptoms of scorpion or spider venom poisoning.
Professor Johnson said the study was a “first step” in trying to understand why scorpions can sting more than spiders.
“The first step is to find out whether or not there is a causal relationship,” he said.
He said the venom might be “somewhat more toxic than the venom of the scorpion”.
“It’s certainly not going to kill scorpions,” he added.
The study was conducted with mice and was funded by the Australian Research Council.
Follow @ABCNewsScience for more news on scorpions, spiders and more.