Liberal Use of Insecticides May be to Blame for Latest Bedbug Infestation
In the 1940′s and 50′s, DDT and other insecticides were liberally applied to eradicate bedbug populations. Scientists now hypothesize that the few survivors produced offspring with insecticide-resistant traits.
Popular Science is reporting various studies being done to test this hypothesis.
Entomologist Dini Miller of Virginia Tech and her group are comparing cuticle-coding genes in both insecticide-resistant and susceptible bedbugs to see if the first group has developed thicker, denser, wax-like exoskeletons, that repel chemicals in pesticides.
Entomologist Subba Reddy Palli of the University of Kentucky and his colleagues believe the latest bedbug population may have developed metabolic enzymes that render pesticides harmless to them.
Read more of the article here: http://www.popsci.com/science/article/2011-05/bedbugs-are-harder-ever-kill