Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

A Granddad's Advice May Help Thwart Mosquitoes

Date:
February 2, 2006
Source:
USDA/Agricultural Research Service
Summary:
Regional wisdom passed on long ago to a boy who grew up to be an Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientist could lead to the next breakthrough against mosquitoes. The scientist, Charles T. Bryson, was told by his grandfather John Rives Crumpton that fresh, crushed leaves of American beautyberry, Callicarpa americana, helped keep biting insects away from draft animals such as horses and mules.

Berries and leaves of American beautyberry, Callicarpa americana, on Pinedale Farm. The Mississippi farm was once owned by John Rives Crumpton, grandfather of ARS botanist Charles T. Bryson.
Credit: Photo by Charles T. Bryson

Regional wisdom passed on long ago to a boy who grew up to be an Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientist could lead to the next breakthrough against mosquitoes.

The scientist, Charles T. Bryson, was told by his grandfather John Rives Crumpton that fresh, crushed leaves of American beautyberry, Callicarpa americana, helped keep biting insects away from draft animals such as horses and mules.

According to Bryson, a botanist in ARS -- Southern Weed Science Research Unit at Stoneville, Miss., it was known among folks in northeastern Mississippi during the early 20th century that placing the crushed leaves under an animal -- s harness would mash out a repellant oil. Eventually, some people there started mashing the leaves and rubbing the residue on their own skins.

Bryson later shared this knowledge with colleagues in ARS' Natural Products Utilization Research Unit at Oxford, Miss, where chemist Charles Cantrell studied the American beautyberry to see what it is about it that mosquitoes don't like.

Cantrell, working with entomologist Jerome Klun of ARS -- Chemicals Affecting Insect Behavior Research Unit in Beltsville, Md., and Oxford plant physiologist Stephen Duke, isolated several insect-repelling compounds from the plant.

Among these was callicarpenal, which may represent ARS -- next important anti-mosquito compound. ARS recently developed SS220, a repellent that -- s just as effective as DEET, the world -- s most-used insect repellent. DEET was developed by ARS and the U.S. Army decades ago.

According to Cantrell, isolated callicarpenal was as effective in laboratory tests as SS220 in preventing mosquito bites. Those tests were conducted by Klun against the mosquito species Aedes aegypti, which is best known as the yellow-fever mosquito, and Anopheles stephensi, which spreads malaria in Asia.

Cantrell said that a provisional patent application has been submitted for callicarpenal, and that toxicity trials will precede any testing on humans.

###

ARS is the U.S. Department of Agriculture's chief scientific research agency.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by USDA/Agricultural Research Service. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

USDA/Agricultural Research Service. "A Granddad's Advice May Help Thwart Mosquitoes." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 February 2006. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/02/060201233218.htm>.
USDA/Agricultural Research Service. (2006, February 2). A Granddad's Advice May Help Thwart Mosquitoes. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/02/060201233218.htm
USDA/Agricultural Research Service. "A Granddad's Advice May Help Thwart Mosquitoes." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/02/060201233218.htm (accessed August 29, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Friday, August 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) State health officials say testing has confirmed the presence of a killer amoeba in a water system serving three St. John the Baptist Parish towns. (Aug. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Australian Sheep Gets Long Overdue Haircut

Raw: Australian Sheep Gets Long Overdue Haircut

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) Hoping to break the record for world's wooliest, Shaun the sheep came up 10 pounds shy with his fleece weighing over 50 pounds after being shorn for the first time in years. (Aug. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Minds Blown: Scientists Develop Fish That Walk On Land

Minds Blown: Scientists Develop Fish That Walk On Land

Newsy (Aug. 28, 2014) Canadian scientists looking into the very first land animals took a fish out of water and forced it to walk. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Huge Ancient Wine Cellar Found In Israel

Huge Ancient Wine Cellar Found In Israel

Newsy (Aug. 28, 2014) An international team uncovered a large ancient wine celler that likely belonged to a Cannonite ruler. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins