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Does our smell help mosquitoes track us?

  • Published at 10:32 am August 29th, 2017
Does our smell help mosquitoes track us?
No matter how well we cover ourselves, female mosquitoes always find a way through the netting. Even bug repellents and lighting citronella candles fail to protect us from them. Mosquitoes always find a way to seek us out to fulfil their need for proteins to produce their eggs. Researchers discovered a receptor that mosquitoes use to detect both carbon dioxide (CO2) and skin odour. Female mosquitoes have nerve cells called cpA neurons that have a receptor to detect carbon dioxide. [caption id="attachment_74962" align="aligncenter" width="1024"]Mosquitoes from hell Reuters Mosquitoes from hell Reuters[/caption] Elevated carbon dioxide helps mosquitoes find us even if we are wrapped in a sheet or through clothing, reports the Guardian. Mosquitoes use a triple threat of visual, olfactory, and thermal cues to detect their targets. Olfactory receptors, the insect smell detectors, allow the mosquito to indulge very particular tastes: blood type and the range of bacteria on the skin. Female mosquitoes can also distinguish between different types of perspiration. According to the report, alcohol attracts them.