Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Innovative new nanotechnology stops bed bugs in their tracks -- literally

Date:
May 30, 2013
Source:
Stony Brook University
Summary:
Bed bugs now need to watch their step. Researchers have developed a safe, non-chemical resource that literally stops bed bugs in their tracks. This innovative new technology acts as a human-made web consisting of microfibers 50 times thinner than a human hair which entangle and trap bed bugs and other insects.

A screen capture of a video demonstration of the new technology stopping bed bugs in their tracks.
Credit: Image courtesy of Stony Brook University

Bed bugs now need to watch their step. Researchers at Stony Brook University have developed a safe, non-chemical resource that literally stops bed bugs in their tracks. This innovative new technology acts as a human-made web consisting of microfibers 50 times thinner than a human hair which entangle and trap bed bugs and other insects. This patent-pending technology is being commercialized by Fibertrap, a private company that employs non-toxic pest control methods.

Related Articles


The nanotech solution was developed at Stony Brook University's Center for Advanced Technology in Sensor Materials (Sensor CAT), a program funded by NYSTAR, as part of a statewide effort to encourage greater technological and economic collaboration between industry and research universities.

Miriam Rafailovich "Our nanotechnology produces entanglements that are millions of times more dense than woven products such as fabrics or carpets," said lead researcher Miriam Rafailovich, Distinguished Professor of Materials Science and Engineering and Co-Director in the Program of Chemical and Molecular Engineering at Stony Brook University. "The microfibers trap them by attaching to microstructures on their legs taking away their ability to move, which stops them from feeding and reproducing."

Successful tests were performed using live bed bugs and termites in Professor Rafailovich's lab with the assistance of Ying Liu, a scientist with Stony Brook University's Advanced Energy Research and Technology Center and Stony Brook graduate students Shan He and Linxi Zhang.

Kevin McAllister, Fibertrap's co-founder added, "We are very excited to move this advancement from the lab to the consumer. Our goal has always been to make a difference for people living in areas where bed bugs are pervasive and difficult to eradicate."

The microfibers are safe for humans and pets and unlike chemical treatments the insects cannot develop a resistance to it.

About Bed Bugs

Bed bugs (Cimex lectularius) are small, flat, parasitic insects that feed solely on the blood of people and animals while they sleep. Bed bugs are reddish-brown in color, wingless, range from one millimeter (mm) to seven mm (roughly the size of Lincoln's head on a penny), and can live several months without a blood meal.

Infestation

Bed bug infestations usually occur around or near the areas where people sleep. These areas include apartments, shelters, rooming houses, hotels, cruise ships, buses, trains and dorm rooms. They hide during the day in places such as seams of mattresses, box springs, bed frames, headboards, dresser tables, inside cracks or crevices, behind wallpaper or any other clutter or objects around a bed. Bed bugs have been shown to be able to travel over 100 feet in a night but tend to live within eight feet of where people sleep. A bed bug bite affects each person differently. Bite responses can range from an absence of any physical signs of the bite, to a small bite mark, to a serious allergic reaction. Bed bugs are not considered to be dangerous; however, an allergic reaction to several bites may need medical attention. (Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) For more information please check out the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Bed Bug FAQs.

Statistics

New York City consistently ranks in the top 10 or 15 cities with the worst bed bug problem across the nation. An annual list released by Orkin Pest Control based upon bed bug business in U.S. cities, lists Chicago as having the worst bed bug problem for 2012; New York City comes in at #10.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Stony Brook University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Stony Brook University. "Innovative new nanotechnology stops bed bugs in their tracks -- literally." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 30 May 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130530165850.htm>.
Stony Brook University. (2013, May 30). Innovative new nanotechnology stops bed bugs in their tracks -- literally. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 4, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130530165850.htm
Stony Brook University. "Innovative new nanotechnology stops bed bugs in their tracks -- literally." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130530165850.htm (accessed March 4, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Adults Only Get The Flu Twice A Decade, Researchers Say

Adults Only Get The Flu Twice A Decade, Researchers Say

Newsy (Mar. 4, 2015) Researchers found adults only get the flu about once every five years. Scientists analyzed how a person&apos;s immunity builds up over time as well. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Mount Everest Has a Poop Problem

Mount Everest Has a Poop Problem

Buzz60 (Mar. 4, 2015) With no bathrooms to use, climbers of Mount Everest have been leaving human waste on the mountain for years, and it&apos;s becoming a health issue. Mike Janela (@mikejanela) has more. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Mom Triumphs Over Tragedy, Helps Other Families

Mom Triumphs Over Tragedy, Helps Other Families

AP (Mar. 3, 2015) After her son, Dax, died from a rare form of leukemia, Julie Locke decided to give back to the doctors at St. Jude Children&apos;s Research Hospital who tried to save his life. She raised $1.6M to help other patients and their families. (March 3) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Looted and Leaking, South Sudan's Oil Wells Pose Health Risk

Looted and Leaking, South Sudan's Oil Wells Pose Health Risk

AFP (Mar. 3, 2015) Thick black puddles and a looted, leaking ruin are all that remain of the Thar Jath oil treatment facility, once a crucial part of South Sudan&apos;s mainstay industry. Duration: 01:13 Video provided by AFP
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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

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