Benchmarking insecticide resistance intensity bioassays for Anopheles malaria vector species against resistance phenotypes of known epidemiological significance
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Benchmarking insecticide resistance intensity bioassays for Anopheles malaria vector species against resistance phenotypes of known epidemiological significance

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  • Alternative Title:
    Parasit Vectors
  • Description:

    Insecticide use via indoor residual spraying (IRS) or treated nets is the primary method for controlling malaria vector populations. The incidence of insecticide resistance in vector populations is burgeoning globally making resistance management key to the design of effective malaria control and elimination strategies. Vector populations can be assessed for insecticide resistance using a binary (susceptible or resistant) classification based on the use of the standard WHO insecticide susceptibility assay for adult anopheline mosquitoes. However, the recent scaling up of vector control activities has necessitated a revision of the WHO bioassay protocol to include the production of information that not only diagnoses resistance but also gives information on the intensity of expression of resistance phenotypes detected. This revised protocol is expected to inform on the range of resistance phenotypes in a target vector population using discriminating/diagnostic insecticide concentrations (DC) as well as their potential operational significance using 5× DC and 10× DC assays. The aim of this project was to use the revised protocol to assess the intensity of pyrethroid resistance in a range of insecticide resistant Anopheles strains with known resistance mechanisms and for which there is evidence of operational significance in the field setting from which these colonies were derived.


    Diagnostic concentration (DC) bioassays followed by 5× DC and 10× DC assays using the pyrethroid insecticides permethrin and deltamethrin were conducted according to the standard WHO bioassay method against pyrethroid resistant laboratory strains of Anopheles funestus, An. arabiensis and An. gambiae.


    Low to moderate resistance intensities were recorded for the An. arabiensis and An. gambiae strains while moderate to high intensities were recorded for the An. funestus strains.


    It is evident that resistance intensity assays can add predictive value to the decision making process in vector control settings, although more so in an IRS setting and especially when bench-marked against resistance phenotypes of known operational significance.

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