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(LDI-0731) Isolation of Cues that Drive Mosquito Preference for Certain Human Hosts

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Isolation of Cues that Drive Mosquito Preference for Certain Human Hosts

Principal Investigator:
Lindsay Bellani

Leslie B. Vosshall Ph.D.

Contact Information:
Clinical Research Support Office
Telephone: 1-800-RUCARES
Enrollment Status:
Closed to Enrollment

Brief Summary of Protocol:
The reason for doing this research is to study why mosquitoes are attracted to certain humans more than others. Female mosquitoes (such as the species Aedes aegypti) naturally feed on human blood as a protein source to develop their eggs. This means that after females have mated with a male and are ready to make their eggs, they are very attracted to humans. Previous studies have shown that during this time, Aedes aegypti female mosquitoes are more attracted to some humans than to others. It is not completely understood why the mosquitoes have this preference.

We think that female mosquitoes may target humans whose blood is particularly full of proteins or other nutrients important for producing healthy eggs. We also think that humans may release odors that either attract or repel the mosquitoes and that these smells are produced by the bacteria that normally live on our skin and interact with our sweat. It is possible that different skin bacteria may explain differences in how people smell and how frequently they are targeted by mosquitoes.

We first need a way to find people who are frequently-targeted or rarely-targeted by mosquitoes. In this pilot study, we will determine the best way to make this distinction. We will also determine the best way to measure the health of mosquitoes’ offspring and the best way to survey the types of bacteria that live on every human’s skin.

Understanding why mosquitoes choose to bite particular groups of people may eventually allow us to develop new tools to reduce the spread of deadly mosquito-borne diseases such as malaria, dengue fever, yellow fever, and West Nile fever.

Detailed Description of Protocol:
If you join the research study, you will take part for up to 4 months. The research study as a whole will last about 2 years.

About 20 people will take part in the research study. This study will involve 4 visits by you.

What specifically makes a person eligible for the study?
You may be eligible to enter this study:

- Healthy
- No history of blood-borne diseases
- No history of malaria, dengue fever, yellow fever or West Nile virus
- Non smoker



Children permitted to participate:

Potential Benefits.....
There will be no direct benefit to you. Instead, others may benefit in the future from what we learn from this study.

Compensation is provided for participation.