In sub-Saharan Africa, malaria presents an overwhelming public health challenge, because of prevailing favourable conditions for the malaria mosquito to breed in, and poverty, thus increasing the disease burden.
Malaria has maintained its position as a major health problem causing fatalities in populations at higher risk of contracting the disease (children of less than 5 years and pregnant women) in sub-Saharan Africa.
In this review article, the authors present information on the current status of knowledge on managing mosquito larvae in mosquito breeding water and adult mosquito populations using chemicals derived from plants, to alter their behaviour. They also provide an update on the current advancements in technologies to improve longevity and efficiency of these compounds for field application.
The article concludes that it is economically feasible to use plant bioactive compounds in integrated vector management programmes, as these are derived from plants that grow in abundance in nature, many of which are still unexploited for vector control. However, while being cost-effective, efficacious, ecologically sound and sustainable, these compounds still need testing on a large scale in the field and under different epidemiological conditions, among other drawbacks noted.
This is an output of the ‘Optimisation of Plant and Animal based Odours for Malaria Vectors Control’ project. It is partly funded by the UK Department for International Development, a core donor of the International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology.
Muema J.M., Bargul J.L., Njeru S.N., Onyango J.O. and Imbahale S. (2017) Prospects for malaria control through manipulation of mosquito larval habitats and olfactory-mediated behavioural responses using plant-derived compounds. Parasites & Vectors 10, 184. https://doi.org/10.1186/s13071-017-2122-8
Prospects for malaria control through manipulation of mosquito larval habitats and olfactory-mediated behavioural responses using plant-derived compounds