Washington, Jan 13 (ANI): Scientists are on a mission to create a life-like version of the Pied Piper that will specifically target rodents but pose no harm to other animals, people or plants.
According to C and EN Associate Editor Jyllian Kemsley, rats not only carry infectious disease, but also threaten survival of native plants and wildlife.
But modern rat poisons, often based on anticoagulants, can harm people and other animals and rats are developing resistance, so that they shrug off the effects of existing anticoagulants.
The article says that one of the major challenges today involves tracking whether and how much of a rodenticide is being consumed by rats or by other animals.
Now, some studies look promising in that they have reported use of special fluorescent dyes to track how much bait rodents are eating and studying the faecal samples of their predators to identify contamination routes.
Research also involves mutations in a gene that allows some rats to develop resistance to anticoagulants. These and other studies could lead to safer rat killers, the article suggests.
It is published in the current edition of Chemical and Engineering News (CandEN). (ANI)