Sixty million people and more than 70 million livestock live in Africa at risk of contracting trypanosomiasis. The heads of member states of the African Union (AU) declared the year 2000 as the beginning of the Pan African Tsetse and Trypanosomiasis Eradication Campaign to eradicate tsetse flies and the diseases they transmit from the continent. For the first time the social and economic consequences of trypanosomiasis were brought to the attention of the affected populations. Efforts to control the fatal disease in man and livestock are based on treatment of patients and livestock with trypanocidal drugs. Resistance-related drug failures are increasing. Methods to control tsetse flies rely on insecticides. Past tsetse campaigns proved unsustainable due to the public good character of most control techniques such as aerial and ground spraying, traps or targets. Treating livestock with insecticides may be more sustainable and is also controlling ticks, which can transmit economically important and often fatal diseases. Costs per head of livestock and tick resistance against insecticides are seen as a major hindrance to their continuous large-scale use. Insecticide treated nets proved an effective and affordable means protecting pigs against tsetse transmitted trypanosomoses in Ghana.
Burkhard, B.; Holzgrefe, B.; Mahama, C.I.; Baumann, M.P.O.; Mehlitz, D.; Clausen, P.H. Managing Tsetse Transmitted Trypanosomosis by Insecticide Treated Nets - an Affordable and Sustainable Method for Resource Poor Pig Farmers in Ghana. PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases (2011) 5 (10) e1343. e1343. [DOI: 10.1371/journal.pntd.0001343]