In many places, the drone of a nearby mosquito is more than annoying–it's dangerous. These insects transmit a variety of diseases, including yellow fever and malaria.
Scientists have now identified a protein that certain mosquitoes use to home in on human skin. This receptor, which resides on the surface of olfactory cells, senses 4-methyphenol, a molecule found in human sweat. John R. Carlson of Yale University and his colleagues reveal the finding in the Jan. 15 Nature.