California Scientits Find new Substances to Fight Mosquitoes
加州科学家发现驱蚊的新药物
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2019-03-04 19:55
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The sound of a mosquito can mean trouble in many parts of the world. The bite of the mosquito can be deadly. The insects carry serious diseases like malaria. The World Health Organization estimates that almost 630,000 people died from malaria and malaria-related causes in 2012, most of these cases were in African countries south of the Saharan desert.

在世界上很多地方,蚊子的声音总是带给人烦恼。蚊子的叮咬可能是致命的。这种昆虫会传播疟疾等严重疾病。据世界卫生组织估计,2012年将近有63万人死于疟疾和疟疾相关疾病,其中多数病例发生在撒哈拉以南非洲国家。

In the United States, scientists are seeking new ways to fight malaria. A group of California scientists is working to develop a more effective and less costly substances to protect people from mosquito.

在美国,科学家们正在寻找对抗疟疾的新办法。一群加州科学家正致力于研制一种更有效更便宜的化学物质来保护人们免受蚊子叮咬。

The researchers work at the University of California Riverside. They are investigating the sense of smell in mosquitoes. They found the insects use the same receptor for identifying carbon dioxide in human breath as they do for the smell of our skin.

这些研究人员就职于加州大学河滨分校。他们正在研究蚊子的嗅觉。他们发现,蚊子使用相同的感受器来识别人体呼出的二氧化碳及我们皮肤的气味。

Anandasankar Ray is leading the investigation. He says scientists tested more than a million chemical compounds until they found a substance called Ethyl pyruvate. He says Ethyl pyruvate makes the mosquitoes' receptor inactive.

Anandasankar Ray领导了这项研究。他说,科学家们测试了一百多万种化合物,直到他们发现一种被称为丙酮酸乙酯的化学物质,这种物质能够使蚊子的感受器失灵。

"When we apply Ethyl pyruvate to a human arm and offer it to hungry mosquitoes in a cage, then very few of the mosquitoes are attracted to the human arm because only a few of them are able to smell it out," said Ray.

他说,“当我们在人胳膊上涂上丙酮酸乙酯,并放到关在笼子里的饥饿的蚊子面前,只有极少数的蚊子被人胳膊所吸引,因为只有极少数蚊子能够闻出来。”

Genevieve Tauxe is a member of the UC Riverside research team. She says it was not easy to find the neurons of noble cells that recognise both the smell of human breath and skin. She describes a device the researchers are using to examine mosquitoes.

吉纳维夫·托克斯(Genevieve Tauxe)是加州大学河滨分校研究团队的一员。她说,找到能同时识别人体呼吸和皮肤气味的神经元很不容易。她介绍了研究人员用来研究蚊子的仪器。

"With this apparatus, we are able to insert a very small electrode into the part of the mosquito's nose, effectively, where its olfactory neurons are and where the smell is happening," said Tauxe.

托克斯表示,“有了这个仪器,我们就能把一根非常细小的电极有效地插入蚊子的鼻子部分,这里有着蚊子的嗅觉神经元,嗅觉就是在这里发生的。”

The scientists use these instruments to look for the signals that a mosquito's neurons send to its brain when it finds an interesting smell. Computer screen images show when the sense is strong or weak.

科学家们使用这些仪器来查看蚊子找到有吸引力的气味后其神经元发给大脑的信号。计算机图像会显示这种感官的强或弱。

Anandasankar Ray says a product based on Ethyl pyruvate may cost less to manufacture than DEET, the most effective chemical treatment now in use. He says DEET is too costly for most people who live in areas affected by malaria.

Anandasankar Ray表示,基于丙酮酸乙酯的产品制造成本低于避蚊胺(DEET),避蚊胺是目前使用最为有效的化学方法。他说,避蚊胺对居住在受疟疾影响地区的人们来说过于昂贵。

"Perhaps by finding odors that can attack other target receptors, we will be able to improve upon DEET and finally have the next generation of insect behavior control products," said Ray.

他说,“获许通过寻找能够攻击其它目标感受器的气味,我们将能够改进避蚊胺,并最终研制出下一代蚊虫控制产品。”

The scientists believe they will soon be able to find a way to manufacture less costly and more effective products for the fight against mosquitoes.

科学家们相信他们将很快能够找到办法生产出更便宜更有效的防蚊产品。

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