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Kite patch is claimed to make you "invisible" to mosquitoes

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July 25, 2013

The Kite Mosquito Patch is worn on the clothing like a decal, and is said to keep mosquito...

The Kite Mosquito Patch is worn on the clothing like a decal, and is said to keep mosquitoes from detecting your presence for up to 48 hours

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Depending on what part of the world you live in, mosquitoes can range from being an annoyance, to acting as carriers of life-threatening diseases such as malaria and West Nile virus. Sprays containing deet do a fairly decent job of keeping the mozzies at bay, but they’re also highly toxic. Less-nasty sprays, bracelets and other devices are also available, although (as I can attest to from personal experience) they tend not to be very effective. Now, however, a group of California-based entrepreneurs are developing what could be the ultimate deterrent – the Kite Mosquito Patch.

Each disposable square patch measures just 1.5 inches (38 mm) per side, and is simply stuck onto the clothing like an adhesive decal. A proprietary blend of FDA-approved non-toxic ingredients within the patch then exudes a scent, that reportedly blocks mosquitoes’ ability to detect exhaled carbon dioxide – that’s the major method by which the insects track down their human prey.

Once exposed to the air, the patch remains effective for 48 hours.

The Kite patch's active ingredients being tested in a lab

The Kite is based on research that was initially carried out at the University of California, Riverside, where it received funding from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The company that was founded to develop the patch has also benefitted from an NIH grant, along with grants and collaborative agreements formed with other organizations.

Initial large-scale testing is planned to take place in Uganda, where disease-carrying mosquitoes are a major health issue. Ultimately, it is hoped that Kite patches will be widely available both to aid organizations, and to consumers around the world. Hopefully Gizmag will be able to acquire some of the patches soon, to conduct our own hands-on testing – it would be interesting to see if a patch worn on the shirt, for instance, is really effective at keeping mosquitoes away from one’s legs and feet.

The Kite group is currently raising finds on Indiegogo, and has proven very successful. The funding goal of US$75,000 was met in just four days, with the total currently sitting at approximately $236,000. There’s still plenty of time to take part, however. A pledge of $10 will send a pack of five Kites to a family in Uganda, while $35 will send 10 patches and also get you 10 of your own. An estimated retail price has yet to be established.

Other recent research projects have looked at introducing mosquitoes that have been genetically engineered to stop them from smelling humans, creating mosquito-repellant clothing, and even wiping the insects out entirely.

More information on the Kite patch is available in the pitch video below.

Sources: Kite, Indiegogo

About the Author
Ben Coxworth An experienced freelance writer, videographer and television producer, Ben's interest in all forms of innovation is particularly fanatical when it comes to human-powered transportation, film-making gear, environmentally-friendly technologies and anything that's designed to go underwater. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, where he spends a lot of time going over the handlebars of his mountain bike, hanging out in off-leash parks, and wishing the Pacific Ocean wasn't so far away.   All articles by Ben Coxworth
15 Comments

Wiping mosquitoes out entirely is by far the best option.

MBadgero
25th July, 2013 @ 01:37 pm PDT

I wish they shipped to Canada!

Delumen
25th July, 2013 @ 02:11 pm PDT

the extermination of a species even a pest is a very risky idea

what the long term repercussions could be are unknown

being from Australia we know what adding a "harmless" animal or plant can do

removal could be just as bad

cute fluffy Rabbits ( mass destruction of native habitats)

cane toad ( mass destruction of native habitats)

are just 2

Bruce Mawby
25th July, 2013 @ 03:14 pm PDT

MBadgero, I think this is not an option.

"Before the idea of eradicating mosquitoes for the benefit of one (humans) is seriously considered, it must be proven that eradication WILL NOT affect our complex ecosystems. We shouldn't forget the precautionary principle."

Please read all the article (including comments):

http://www.nature.com/news/2010/100721/full/466432a.html

halofirst
25th July, 2013 @ 03:20 pm PDT

Please help me. I'd love to use this product especially for my wife who seems extra tasty to mossies.

I see arms in boxes with mosquitoes and I assume that the test subjects head is not in the box so there is no extra Co2 in either case, so how is Kite blocking the mosquitoes from finding the patch of exposed skin?

Ride Like Mike
25th July, 2013 @ 03:26 pm PDT

halofirst, did you read your own reference? Specifically, "Yet in many cases, scientists acknowledge that the ecological scar left by a missing mosquito would heal quickly as the niche was filled by other organisms. Life would continue as before — or even better. " Of course there are people that argue that they shouldn't be exterminated. They also argue that the human population is too large, but they don't volunteer themselves for reduction.

Bruce Mawby, adding a foreign species can have a disastrous effect on the environment. The examples here in the USA are numerous: kudzu, Russian and autumn olive, pythons, zebra mussels. Removing one has little effect if the species is a parasite; case in point, the North American screw fly. This also should dispel the notion that mosquitoes can't be exterminated, since the screw fly was exterminated in the 1950s. This was before genetic engineering made it relatively easy, as in the Gizmag article that is referenced here. Although it could be argued that mosquitoes help control the human population, as they are one of the greatest killers of people by carrying disease.

MBadgero
26th July, 2013 @ 12:45 am PDT

http://www.gizmag.com/genetically-modified-mosquitoes-aegypti-mosquito/20668/

Dismiss concerns about what might happen. Humanity already has things which are more environmentally damaging that wiping out the mosquito. Humanity has caused the extinction of hundreds if not thousands of species.

From this:

http://curiosity.discovery.com/question/how-species-actually-gone-extinct

"roughly 50 million still survive into the modern era. While these numbers are certainly extreme at first glance, it serves as proof that extinction, while a sad occurrence, is a part of life for all living things."

The extinction of one ridiculous parasite looks insignificant by comparison.

myearwood
26th July, 2013 @ 07:08 am PDT

Adding organic sulfur to your diet makes your blood smell to alkanine, and they go elsewhere looking for acid blood. True for horses as well as man.

The patch sounds wonderful but in the mean time hungry blood suckers can be discouraged by changing your ph.

Organicsulfur@sisna.com is the Cellular Matrix Study

Patrick McGean
26th July, 2013 @ 09:25 am PDT

I will rejoice if and when the last mosquito is exterminated! I know first had the effects of malaria. What's more the d**n bites are really annoying! The barn swallows would just have to find something else to eat.

JAT
26th July, 2013 @ 09:52 am PDT

brilliant Indiegogo campaign. One of the best I have seen.

Once this proves itself, wonder if it could be used to hide the global warming effects of CO2 to the planet?

ADVENTUREMUFFIN
26th July, 2013 @ 10:49 am PDT

we are forgetting that mosquitoes have one very very important function in nature... probably the most important function of them all, that of keeping the real plague on this planet in check... It is said that of all the humans that have ever died on the planet, more or less 50% of them, died from Mosquito related disease. ironically it could be deducted that if it weren't for that, us humans would have probably ended up destroying the world a long long time ago....

Michiel Mitchell
26th July, 2013 @ 01:47 pm PDT

As long as toads, frogs, bats, dragonflies, etc. could find a replacement food source, I could live with mosquitoes being eradicated. Until then, we have DEET, which is safe (as long as you don't mix it with booze and drink it or inject it into your body) and far more effective than any other established method.

If this can be proven as effective as DEET, great. If it was effective and wonderful-smelling as DEET, even better!

Justin Chamberlin
27th July, 2013 @ 04:46 pm PDT

Patrick McGean wrote:

The patch sounds wonderful but in the mean time hungry blood suckers can be discouraged by changing your ph.

I consulted with a MD friend who is very sharp, he wrote:

You can't can't your body pH. It is one of the most closely regulated systems in physiology.

Obviously more marketing crap and pseudo science.

If you actually change your pH, you enzyme efficiencies plummet and you get sick as sh.t.

Look up metabolic alkalosis.

Steve Jasik
29th July, 2013 @ 05:32 pm PDT

Sure, i say go ahead and wipe out the little suckers if we can,but in the meantime the little Kite device sounds like a good development, especially for saving lives in underdeveloped countries.

Bennie Harris
31st July, 2013 @ 10:12 pm PDT

There seems to be some things wrong with the Kite patch:

1. When they started "advertising" it they said it would give 48 hours protection. Now all their communication says 24 hours.

2. They have apparently tested it on only one mosquito species, although it is unclear where and which species. There are standard World Health Organization test protocols but Kite make no mention of these anywhere in their literature.

3. They have no idea of how much the product is going to cost when/if they get round to launching it.

4. The field trials in Uganda, that they raised so much money to carry out, have not started even though it is several months since their Indigogo campaign.

5. They do not know if the product is going to be biodegradable or not. It is surprising and worrying to me that, at this stage of development, they do not know what they are going to make the product out of.

Probably the most concerning point is this...

6. In different temperatures/ambient conditions mosquitoes fly at different heights. This is why you sometimes get bitten on the ankles, sometimes on the arms and sometimes on the head. One patch measuring 1.5cms x 1.5cms is never going to give you full body protection - mosquitoes hunt upwind and one little patch is not going to protect you.

There is clearly a need for an innovative product in the fight against mosquitoes. However i do not think Kite is it There is a need for a product that lasts a long time (not just 48, or now 24 hours) and one that gives full body protection.

Boz081
22nd April, 2014 @ 10:10 am PDT
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