The mosquito is the number one public enemy of the summer season. It is also the animal that kills most people in the world, transferring diseases such as malaria. But how to escape mosquito bites? Italian researchers have studied how to cut the appetite. According to them, it is enough to provide him with a sweet meal to curb his urge to sting.
"Loot …" Day and night, hearing him wander is absolutely shocking. In addition, the mosquito is the most dangerous animal on earth: it leads to diseases that cause destruction (malaria, dengue fever, affinity virus, chakungonia), and during the summer season, there is no doubt that public enemy No. 1. Scientists around the world are always looking for a solution to prevent it from biting us. And Italian researchers have just discovered an interesting route.
In a study published on May 9 in the journal PLOS Biology, scientists at the University of Milan claim that the urge to bite mosquitoes will be eliminated after a sweet meal. A gene will be the basis of this behavior and control it can be part of the solution.
Visible effects for 5 to 6 days
To reach this conclusion, scientists have worked on the tiger mosquito Aedes albopictus, known to bite during the day to be aggressive. Born in Southeast Asia, the insect continues to accumulate land around the world. It is currently in 51 French departments. Of course he is everywhere!
Two groups of samples were tested in the laboratory: one was treated with water and the other with sugar water. By then, a human hand had come close, and the researchers estimated which of the two mosquito groups would probably bite. As a result, young females supplied with sugar were not interested in the human blood scientists they offered. And that, for five to six days. The others, on the other hand, were more aggressive, more hungry.
Mosquitoes feed on sugar and have tended to bite less, according to Italian researchers. (Figure Figure: Pixabay)
If the easiest explanation to provide was that the mosquitoes that did not enjoy sugar had higher energy requirements and therefore needed more to meet them, the Italian researchers pushed their research even further. They looked at mosquito gardens.
One of these genes, known as Vg-2, makes it possible to build a protein that plays a role in the ovarian development of females. And the more this protein is produced, the more mosquito will bite. However, its production goes down after a sweet meal, as after the injection, they are observed.
"Control of the gene in question, and therefore the production of this protein, can therefore be an effective tool to reduce the number of bites that we are victims, and at the same time the diseases transmitted," declared Paolo Gabrieli, a zoologist and author of this new study. Additional work is now required to track this discovery and is considered "promising" by the international scientific community.