Disrupting Mosquito Reproduction and Parasite Development for Malaria Control

by Lauren M. Childs, Francisco Y. Cai, Evdoxia G. Kakani et al.
PLoS Pathog 12(12): e1006060, 15 December 2016

20 pp. 2.2 MB

Mosquito control is the only intervention that can reduce malaria transmission from very high levels to close to zero. However, current mosquito control methods are severely threatened by the rapid spread of insecticide resistance in anopheline mosquito populations that transmit the malaria-causing Plasmodium parasites. Here the authors show that when steroid hormone signalling is interrupted in female Anopheles mosquitoes, various aspects of their lifecycle are disrupted – females produce and lay fewer eggs, do not mate successfully and die more rapidly. Furthermore, they become less likely to be infected by malaria parasites. The authors predict that these compounds would provide an important new tool against malaria, particularly in regions of widespread insecticide resistance.

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