The changes in mosquito vector behaviour and the emerging resistance to insecticides will challenge the decline of malaria

Authors

  • C. Sokhna,

    Corresponding author
    1. URMITE, UMR CNRS 6236 - IRD 198, Inserm 1095, Aix Marseille Université, Campus Universitaire IRD de Hann, Dakar, Sénégal
    • Corresponding author: C. Sokhna, URMITE, UMR CNRS 6236 – IRD 198, Inserm 1095, Aix Marseille Université, Campus Universitaire IRD de Hann, IRD B.P. 1386, Dakar, Senegal

      E-mail: cheikh.sokhna@ird.fr

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  • M. O. Ndiath,

    1. URMITE, UMR CNRS 6236 - IRD 198, Inserm 1095, Aix Marseille Université, Campus Universitaire IRD de Hann, Dakar, Sénégal
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  • C. Rogier

    1. Institut Pasteur de Madagascar, Antananarivo, Madagascar
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Abstract

The preventive measures against malaria recommended by the WHO include anti-vector procedures such as indoor residual spraying, the use of long-lasting insecticide-treated bed-nets, and the destruction of larval breeding sites. The presence of insecticide-treated materials inside the mosquito habitat has consequences for the vector's population, reducing density, survival, contact with humans, and feeding frequency. However, the effectiveness of these tools is being challenged by the emergence of insecticide resistance. The evolution of resistance to insecticides in Anopheles threatens to thwart the goal of decreasing malaria transmission, in an arms race between malaria control programmes and the vector populations. Multiple mechanisms of resistance to insecticides have been observed in Anopheles populations, including target site mutation (knockdown resistance), increased metabolic detoxification, and remarkable behavioural adaptation. These disturbing observations all show the capacity of Anopheles to adapt to and circumvent strategies aimed at reducing malaria transmission. Thus, by using nets to protect ourselves, are we providing Anopheles with the entire arsenal needed to hit much harder?

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