Scientists at Ohio State University have discovered that combining bed bug's own chemical signals with a common pest control agent makes the treatment more effective in killing bed bugs.
Researchers found that when they sprayed bed bug infested areas with a synthetic version of their own alarm pheramone, the bugs are more likely to walk through areas treated with dessicant dusts, which will kill the insects by making them highly susceptible to dehydration.
As bed bugs continue to develop resistance to traditional pesticides, treatment with dessicant dusts is considered favorable, as long as the bugs cross treated surfaces.
"Once we put the alarm pheromone in the places bed bugs hide, boom, they instantly started moving around and moving through the desiccant dust," said Joshua Benoit, lead author of the study and a doctoral candidate in entomology studying under David Denlinger at Ohio State University.
"Consistently, the addition of a pheromone blend to desiccant dust was more effective than adding either chemical by itself or by using desiccant dust alone."