Are you the sort of person who’ll get mauled by every mosquito within a 1000 mile radius while wearing 100 per cent Deet, but everyone else around you escapes unscathed?
Some people seem to be more attractive to mosquitoes than others. A lot more attractive.
Meaning the hotter months can be rather painful for them.
Given that this is an honour no one really wants, it’s important to understand why some people get bitten more by mosquitoes , and what they can do to help this.
So is it diet? Or blood type? Or something else?
In fact, the answer may lie in an unexpected place – your socks.
Experts working at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine have been conducting a rather smelly task.
They’ve been collecting hundreds of dirty socks so they can test whether genetic factors dictate how "tasty" we are to mosquitoes.
Their experiment will see them analyse the specific odours of the socks and the genetic make up of their owners, which include 100 twins from Gambia and the UK, to answer the age-old question about why some people get bitten more.
James Logan, a medical entomologist at the school, who is leading the work said: "We know very little about the genetics of what makes us attractive to mosquitoes.
"We hope this study will give us more insights into the mechanisms that help change our body doors to make us more or less attractive to mosquitoes.
"If we can identify important genes, perhaps we could develop a pill or medication that would allow the body to produce natural repellents to keep mosquitoes away."
We already know there are few things which makes us more appealing to a mosquito’s pallette.
1. If you emit more carbon dioxide than others.
2. People with type O blood tend to be more susceptible to bites.
3. As are people who drink more beer (sorry).
4. Pregnant women are more attractive to mosquitoes – especially those carrying malaria.
5. Having more bacteria on your skin can be a factor too.
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