Another Tick Species’ Saliva Found to Have Antitumor Properties

camel tick

Millions of years of evolution have made ticks highly specialized bloodsuckers. In fact, researchers who have studied tick saliva have found a range of compounds that fight back host defenses like clotting and tissue repair and allow ticks to feed for extended periods. In another context, though, those same chemical properties could be seen in […]

The Story of the Little Fire Ant, and Why Modern Medicine Can Learn From Indigenous Cultures

Wasmannia auropunctata

By John P. Roche, Ph.D. Lesions of the cornea that cause white discolorations of the eye, called leukomas or corneal opacities, have been discovered for decades in humans, domestic animals, and wild animals. Sometimes called West Indian punctate keratopathy, Florida spots, or Rice’s keratopathy, this condition was a mystery to the medical community. But a […]

Three-Quarters of U.S. Has Suitable Climate for Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus Mosquitoes

Aedes aegypti estimated range - CDC

Three-quarters of counties in the contiguous United States present suitable environmental conditions for at least part of the year for either Aedes aegypti or Aedes albopictus mosquitoes to survive if introduced, according to researchers at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The two mosquito species can transmit viruses that cause Zika, dengue, chikungunya, and yellow fever. The […]

Faster ID of Mosquito Species Possible via CDC Improvements to DNA Testing Methods

Aedes aegypti or Aedes albopictus?

A crucial step in management of mosquito-borne diseases is knowing exactly what kind of mosquitoes are present in any given locale. Are they garden-variety species that aren’t carriers of human pathogens, or are they potentially dangerous vectors such as Aedes aegypti or Aedes albopictus? Identifying and discerning between those two species is important as well, […]

Building a Better Light Trap: Study Finds Specific Light Waves Attract Anopheline Mosquitoes

mosquito light trap

By Andrew Porterfield For more than 50 years, the light trap—an incandescent light source attached to an insect collector—has been the standard for sampling potentially disease-carrying mosquitos. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other insect control agencies and organizations worldwide have used the light-bulb trap apparatus to attract and count a wide […]