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Use of floating layers of polystyrene beads to control populations of the filaria vector Culex quinquefasciatus.

Floating layers of polystyrene beads suffocate mosquito larvae and pupae and inhibit egg laying. The layers are very durable in breeding sites with water contained within walls, as in wet pit latrines and soakage pits. In some areas such pits constitute an important breeding site for Culex quinquefasciatus. Trials have been conducted in communities in Zanzibar, Tanzania, and in Tamil Nadu, India, where such mosquito populations were the vectors of Wuchereria bancrofti. In each case, treatment of all the pits with polystyrene beads was integrated with mass treatment of the people with antifilarial drugs-in Zanzibar in 1988 with diethylcarbamazine (DEC) and in India in the 1990s with DEC plus ivermectin. The results were compared with those in communities with the mass drug treatment alone and with control communities with neither treatment. The polystyrene-bead treatments greatly and sustainably reduced the vector populations. Comparison of the communities after drug treatment ceased showed that this form of vector control contributed markedly to the prevention of a resurgence of filarial infection. Where Cx. quinquefasciatus breeding in pits form a major component of the vector population, use of polystyrene-bead layers could assist considerably in the process of eliminating lymphatic filariasis by mass drug administration.[1]

References

  1. Use of floating layers of polystyrene beads to control populations of the filaria vector Culex quinquefasciatus. Curtis, C.F., Malecela-Lazaro, M., Reuben, R., Maxwell, C.A. Ann. Trop. Med. Parasitol. (2002) [Pubmed]
 
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