Decoded! Why mosquitoes are attracted to people with malaria
Researchers have found the reason why mosquitoes prefer to feed on blood from people infected with malaria. The malaria parasite produces a molecule, HMBPP, which stimulates the human red blood cells to release more carbon dioxide and volatile compounds with an irresistible smell to malaria mosquitoes. The mosquito also eats more blood.

Moreover, these mosquitoes acquire a more severe malaria infection - higher numbers of parasites are produced. Neither humans nor mosquitoes use HMBPP themselves, but the parasite needs the substance to be able to grow. A major step forward in the fight against malaria would be to create a trap that uses the parasite's own system for attracting malaria mosquitoes.
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