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Truvia’s Artificial Sweetener ‘Erythritol’ Discovered To Be An Effective Insecticide & Fly Birth Control Solution

By N. Gutierrez staff@sciencetimes.com | May 24, 2017 04:01 PM EDT

Killing flies obviously isn’t easy for any household citizen. Luckily, a group of researchers studied the sugar alcohol behind Truvia known as Erythritol. The sweetener was then discovered to be the absolute solution for both as an insecticide and as something to control the birth of more flies.

According to UPI, Drexel University researchers discovered that the artificial sweetener used in Truvia called Erythritol has a significant and lethal effect in flies. The team found out that as long as the flies feed off the artificial sweetener, they would no longer give birth to eggs.

"Erythritol has potential to be deployed in a wider array of settings, targeting adults, egg production, active feeding larvae, or all of the above. In part this is because reproductive suppression or disruption has a very strong effect of reducing pest population growth rate and limiting maximum pest population size," Sean O'Donnell, Ph.D., professor in Drexel's College of Arts and Sciences and one of the researchers on the study explained.

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Aside from that, the team’s experiment stated as well that the Erythritol killed off the larvae of the flies within 3 days. In which, the flies couldn’t even reach adulthood anymore. After being exposed, some flies only lived a day and a half. Blue dye seen in the flies was said to be the sign wherein the larvae died due to the sugar alcohol behind Truvia.

The study published in the Journal of Applied Entomology also believed that the artificial sweetener could not only work against fruit flies but would work against other pests as well. Nonetheless, Erythritol was deemed effective in stopping the birth of more flies along with being an effective insecticide as Phys Org reported.

Another study was also said to support the idea of artificial sweeteners like Erythritol are lethal to adult flies. The study was mentioned to be conducted by the son of Daniel Marenda, Ph.D., associate professor in the College of Arts and Sciences. Marenda’s son and his colleagues O'Donnell and Kaitlin Baudier figured that artificial sweeteners are the most lethal that adult fruit flies known as Drosophila melanogaster ingested compared to other multiple polyols that they tested.

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