Mosquitoes pose a significant threat due to their ability to spread diseases such as malaria, Zika, chikungunya, and dengue. Despite efforts like wearing full-sleeved clothing and using bed nets, mosquitoes can still manage to bite. This is because conventional fabrics have gaps between the fibers that allow insects to easily penetrate and bite through them.
Auburn University’s entomologist has discovered a simple yet effective solution to address the problem of mosquitoes.
A fabric sample developed at an American University’s lab may appear ordinary, but it serves a distinct purpose. Designed with a unique knit and geometric structure, the material has the ability to prevent mosquito bites, according to John Beckmann, an assistant professor of entomology and plant pathology at Auburn University. Beckmann aimed to address the global issue of mosquitoes and the diseases they transmit, so he sought a fresh approach.
Researchers developed a new cloth weave that effectively blocks mosquito bites. The fabric is developed in such a way that the mosquito’s proboscis (the needle-like tubular structure) is rendered impermeable. This unique design prevents mosquitoes from penetrating the fabric and reaching the skin.
Having successfully developed the fabric with the ability to block mosquito bites, researchers now plan to further refine the technology. Their goal is to release a clothing line utilizing this fabric and also explore licensing opportunities with various outdoor companies. This would enable the widespread availability and use of the fabric in different types of garments.