17 Oct 2012, BioSpectrum Bureau , BioSpectrum
Singapore: Olfactor Laboratories has advanced a world-class technology that could make mosquito bites a thing of the past and is preparing to take that technology to market as early as 2013.
Following a two-year intensive collaboration with the University of California, Riverside, US, and a multinational pest control company, Olfactor announced its chemical technology can actually modify a mosquito's biting behavior. This is a potential breakthrough in the battle against mosquito-borne diseases such as malaria and the West Nile virus.
Company scientists have assembled a blend of compounds which can be delivered spatially, rather than requiring that they be applied to skin, which can substantially reduce contact between mosquitoes and humans. The chemical technology disrupts the mosquito's ability to detect carbon dioxide, which is how mosquitoes detect a blood meal such as that of a human.
"Not being able to recognize carbon dioxide greatly limits a mosquito's ability to locate and feed on its victim," said Mr Steve Abbott, President of Olfactor Laboratories. "With our technology, humans can essentially become invisible to the mosquito. The results of our research have the potential to fight several deadly mosquito-borne diseases, which are estimated to endanger a significant number of the world's population," Abbott stated."
This technology can be used to not only repel mosquitoes, but also to pull them away from populated areas, where they can be destroyed more effectively. "Our technology will be extremely valuable to world governments, but also travelers, outdoorsmen, and anyone else who simply objects to the bite of a mosquito. Now a scourge for millennia will be reduced, and we welcome inquiries for collaboration from governments and commercial organizations worldwide," said Mr Amro Albanna, CEO, Innovation Economy, a key initial incubator and partner of Olfactor Labs.