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APOPO Training Rats Saves Lives

Posted by Written by Brendan E. with drawing by Mya E. | Found in: Secondary

Such small creatures making such a big impact!

The ‘HeroRATs’ of the world detecting landmines and tuberculosis (TB). Rats have earned a bad name historically, however these rats might change your perception. There’re many problems in the world that humans are trying to solve. These include landmines from remnants of war and tuberculosis which is from the bacteria Mycobacterium Tuberculosis.

With over 60 countries with undiscovered landmines there is a potential for harm for both people and large animals. 3 out of 10 million who have tuberculosis go undiagnosed per year due to inaccurate detection methods used previously.

This deadly infectious disease most commonly affects the persons lungs, and other parts of the body and kills 1.8 million per year. ‘HeroRATs,’ help detect landmines and tuberculosis.

For 20 years these rats have been saving lives, through the organisation APOPO. Rats have a great sense of smell, enabling them to pick up chemical compounds of TNT (explosives) in landmines. Tuberculosis samples are collected and rats can allow for an increase the detection rate of 40%.

You can adopt a hero rat by visiting https://www.apopo.org/en.

Maybe they’ll change your perception of rats.