New Mosquito Repellent Made, "Better Than Anything Else"
Formula uses human compounds to block mosquitoes' sense of smell.
A few years ago, Ulrich Bernier was busy blending various chemicals together in the lab, hoping to figure out why the blood-sucking insects bite some people more than others. Mosquitoes home in on their targets by sniffing out various chemicals and bacteria on human skin.
When he created one blend with a group of chemicals that are very similar to ones found in low concentrations in our bodies, Bernier noticed that the bugs seemed to ignore it. (Read what happens inside you when a mosquito bites.)
These chemicals—which include the tongue twisters homopiperazine and 1-methylhomopiperazine, among others—seemed to have an incredibly robust ability to mask our scent from mosquitoes, said Bernier, a research chemist at the United States Department