Pooches Pass the Sniff Test

Dirty socks donated by Gambian children tested for malaria and springer spaniels in England added up to an advance in the quest for noninvasive malaria tests.
Steven Lindsay, a Durham University public health entomologist, put the socks to the sniff test by trained dogs, who correctly sussed out the socks worn by malaria-infected children with 70% accuracy (90% for noninfected kids).
While dispatching “squadrons of canines patrolling villages in sub-Saharan Africa” isn’t likely, detection dogs, drawing upon established knowledge that malaria alters a person’s odor, could help countries that have eliminated malaria at entry ports, said Lindsay, who presented his results at American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene’s annual meeting Monday.

The Washington Post

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