Watch Out For Flying Doctors!

Are mosquitoes becoming flying doctors? Mosquitoes are a huge problem where I live in Georgia. This time of year, it’s not uncommon for us to get several mosquito bites just walking from the front door to the car. I’ve always had a strong disdain for mosquitoes and have no problem swatting them. Then, I read an article about how mosquitoes are possibly becoming helpful insects, vaccinating people through their bites. Should I change my thinking? Should we start thanking the mosquitoes?

According to Yahoo news, scientists in Europe conducted a study where they used mosquitoes as “flying needles” to administer a vaccine of live malaria parasites through bites. The results were shocking. Everyone that was in the vaccine group became immune to malaria. Since malaria kills about a million people each year, this new way of vaccinating could very possibly offer hope in seeing these numbers decrease.

Dr. Robert Sauerwein said in the Yahoo News article, “This is not a vaccine as in a commercial product, but a way to show how whole parasites can be used like a vaccine to protect against disease.” The ironic thing is that many of the people that contract malaria get the disease because they are bitten by an infected mosquito. Now, it looks like the “vaccination” will be carried by the same pest, a mosquito.

This research is in the very beginning stages; however, scientists are very optimistic about what is to come. I can’t help but wonder what other diseases mosquitoes may be able to help us with in the future. Imagine some day if they could carry an AIDS antibody or a cure for the common cold. Hey – you never know! You can read the in-depth Yahoo News article HERE.

Until this practice becomes more popular, I will keep swatting away at the annoying mosquitoes here in the hot Georgia sun.

Here are some interesting mosquito facts you’ll hear about in this National Geographic video below:
If you have smelly feet, you are more likely to be bitten.
Mosquitoes prefer to bite blondes more than brunettes.
Mosquitoes bite 500 times more frequently when there is a full moon!