Sex and death

April 7, 2000

(Photograph) - Sex and death: a Southampton University spin-off, XO2, has won a Department of Trade and Industry Smart Award to develop more environmentally friendly pest-control systems, using the insects' sex drive. The research, led by Philip Howse, uses pheromones to trap the males. The males, which carry an electromagnetic charge, are coated with magnetic powder. The powder contains either massive doses of pheromones that make the contaminiated male attractive to other males and a turn-off for females or a natural fungicide that kills the male within 24 hours - after he has cross-contaminated females


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