American researchers may have discovered the real reason that mosquitoes crave our blood so much – because it tastes like candy to them.
“We think the taste of blood in mosquitoes is a completely unique experience,” Leslie B., PhD at Rockefeller University in New York. Vosshall said. The investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute reported the research published in the journal “Neuron” on Monday.
The bloody study determined that we taste “salty and sweet”, a salty caramel for figurative parasites, who according to research are able to detect a combination of at least four different substances in the blood. Think how a human tongue can distinguish between salty, sweet, bitter, sour and ummi flavors.
Omnivorous female mosquitoes use their special taste buds to differentiate between the nectar they consume for energy and the blood they drink before laying eggs. Even they have different mouthpieces for each occasion – a “sweet tooth” for sugar and a syringe-like stylelet that penetrates the skin and removes plasma, according to new studies.
To test the taste buds of blood donors, the researchers modified genetically modified mosquitoes with a fluorescent tag that lit when a neuron was activated for a specific taste. He then fed them both sown fied blood and glucose, salt, sodium bicarbonate (mixed with both blood and baking soda) and ATP, the energy boosting compound.
According to Vosshall, “ATP is this special mystery stuff that is like nothing to humans, but is incredibly exciting and beneficial for mosquitoes”.
Scientists discovered that about half of the cells responded to the blood – both real and fake – while the other half did not react to anything, Daily reported. He said that insects are so adept at identifying blood that they distinguish it from nectar “at the first level of sensory identification”.
And while both humans and mosquitoes can reportedly perceive both salty and sweet flavors in the blood, Voschel “the whole experience is definitely different” for a mosquito. She analogizes the pests’ blood-seeking skills to see “Habibe’s ability to see ultraviolet and bats.” ”
Despite their complex palate, mosquitoes are not “picky” when it comes to picking human prey according to Veronica Jove of Rockefeller, who led the unconventional taste test in Washhall’s laboratory. “We’re all tasty enough for a mosquito,” she said.
Scientists hope that understanding the taste buds of mosquitoes will help them make medicines that prevent them from biting people and spreading disease. Vosshall has also proposed using a medicine that would make us less tasty for insects.
“If mosquitoes were not able to detect the taste of blood, in theory they could not transmit the disease,” said Jove.