"Our consortium will focus on the integration of four novel control components in a low-tech (no power source, no need for CO2) and cheap mosquito contamination device (MCD) that will a) lure malaria mosquitoes to an attractive point source, b) infect them there with a fungus as a slow-killing agent, and c) expose them to a juvenile hormone analogue with which they will contaminate their breeding sites and kill mosquito larvae. This is unique because it will be the first vector control tool that targets both adult and larval mosquito stages simultaneously with environment-friendly control agents. We foresee the use of MCDs mostly in the outdoor environment where they will lure, infect, and contaminate host-seeking and resting females. Together with the excito-repellent properties of insecticides used for indoor spraying and bednet impregnation, and possibly spatial repellents, MCDs will serve within a push-pull framework. We aim to develop a low-cost MCD that operates uninterrupted and without maintenance for prolonged periods of. MCDs will be highly useful in areas where insecticide-resistance is hampering the effectiveness of current vector control tools and where behavioural adaptation of mosquito populations has shifted towards outdoor resting and biting. Our goal is to have several prototypes of MCDs in an advanced stage of development and ready for industrial production at the end of this 3-year project. By then, extensive (semi-)field testing in Tanzania and various other countries will have been completed. This proposal brings together a unique mix of business-oriented and academic/institutional partners with a broad range of expertises in fungus and mosquito biology, mosquito behaviour, trapping technology, materials sciences and entrepreneurial interests. We will synergise our abilities to make substantial progress to achieve our goal: to add a novel, effective, and economic alternative to the limited vector control toolbox available to combat malaria."
Fields of science
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Funding SchemeCP-FP - Small or medium-scale focused research project
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