Got Stinky Feet? Mosquitoes Will Love You!
If you are one of those unfortunate souls that is constantly getting bitten by the pesky mosquitoes here's a suggestion - Clean those stinky feet! At least that's what Dr. Fredros Okumu, believes attracts these parasites more, to certain humans than others.
Scientists have known for many years that mosquitoes seek out their human prey by smelling the Carbon Dioxide emitted when breathing. Then, about 15 years ago, Dutch researcher Dr. Bart Knols came up with the theory, that once they get closer, they hone in on their prey, with the help of feet odor.
To test this, he locked himself naked in a room full of the tiny insects - Sure enough, the bulk of his bites were near his feet. While his findings were a big breakthrough, researchers did not know how to capitalize on them, until now.
Dr. Okumu, the head researcher at Tanzania's Ifakara Health Institute, replicated the smell of stinky human feet inside a trap, to test if he could lure mosquitoes in - Sure enough, the parasites swarmed into the device, where they were poisoned and left to die.
The results are so encouraging that the researcher has received a $775,000USD grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, to test his theory further and also, develop affordable traps that can be deployed all over Africa, where the mosquito-borne infectious disease Malaria is responsible for over 800,000 deaths annually.
Resources: blog.chron.com, physorg.com