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Odor Baited Station

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This Global Health Medical Device is designed for or implemented within resource-limited settings - Browse the devices - Add a device

Odor bait station.jpg
Health Topic Malaria
Classification Preventative
Scope Prototype
Location Africa

Problem being addressed[edit]

Although malaria rates have declined greatly in recent years with the increased use of products such as nets, insecticides, and rapid diagnostic tests, malaria transmission outside of the home remains a prominent issue. There is a need, especially in developing sub-Saharan African nations where the disease remains a leading cause of death, to address transmission outside of the home in order to produce the most comprehensive and effective reduction of malaria rates.

Detailed description of the solution[edit]

This device is a trap that lures mosquitoes either with the odor of dirty socks or a synthetic attractant made from a combination of acids, ammonia, carbon dioxide, and other components of the human body that simulate the smell of dirty socks. The traps spray the foot odor with fans that run on solar-powered batteries. Lured mosquitoes are then exposed to chemical or fungal agents that kill them anytime between 24 hours and five days. Studies have shown that such odors are four times as more attractive to mosquitoes than real humans. This device is applicable in developing country settings, especially Africa, mainly because of its cost-effectiveness. The developers estimate that each trap can be produced within a budget of $27 dollars, and 20 devices would suffice for 1,000 people. Additionally, there is no dependence upon an electrical source, as the devices are solar-powered.

Designed by[edit]

  • Designed by: Fredros Okumu

Funding Source[edit]

Funding sources include the Grand Challenges Canada and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.


Peer-reviewed publication[edit]

Okumu FO, Madumla EP, John AN, Lwetoijera DW, Sumaye RD. Attracting, trapping and killing disease-transmitting mosquitoes using odor-baited stations - The Ifakara Odor-Baited Stations. Parasit Vectors. 2010 Mar 1;3:12. PDF available here.

Internally generated reports[edit]

"Smelly socks" story receives astonishing international coverage. (2011). Ifakara Health Institute. Retrieved January 30, 2012. Link available here.

Use of outdoor infrastructure to accelerate benefits of insecticide. (2011). Ifakara Health Institute. Retrieved January 30, 2012. Link available here.

Externally generated reports[edit]

Brown, D. (2011, July 12). Smelly Socks tested in Tanzania as way to prevent Malaria. The Washington Post. Retrieved February 12, 2012. Link available here.

Dixon, R. Smelly socks could help curb malaria. (2011). Los Angeles Times. Retrieved January 30, 2012. Link available here.

Majtenyi, C. (2011). Research: Bad Scent Good for Controlling Mosquitoes. Voice of America. Retrieved January 30, 2012. Link available here.

Meldrum, A. (2011). Latest mosquito repellant: smelly socks. Global Post. Retrieved January 30, 2012. Link available here.