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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Effects of azadirachtin on Ctenocephalides felis in the dog and the cat.

Azadirachtin-containing neem seed extract is a powerful insect growth regulator, a feeding deterrent and repellent with low toxicity. Unfortunately, azadirachtin degrades rapidly in light, excessive heat or alkalinity. Evaluations of azadirachtin on ectoparasites on animals have been scarce. The purpose of this work was to describe the effects of normal and potentiated azadirachtin on Ctenocephalides felis in the dog or cat. Groups of kennelled greyhounds and domestic cats infested with C. felis were sprayed once with azadirachtin containing neem seed extract with or without diethyltoluamide (Deet) and/or citronella. Methanolic extracts with 200, 1000 or 2400 ppm azadirachtin reduced fleas in a dose-dependent manner. Compared with fleas counted on treated dogs just before treatment and untreated infested dogs, 1000-2400 ppm azadirachtin reduced fleas 93-53% for 19 days. However, combined with 500 ppm Deet and 33% w/v citronella, only 500 ppm azadirachtin reduced fleas 95-62% for 20 days. On cats inoculated with 50 fleas 2 days before treatment, the combination reduced fleas and eggs 100% to day 6 and 83-51% from day 7 to 9. On petri dishes, the combination achieved 100% egg mortality up to day 7 and 80% to day 14 and 48-52% to days 21-28. Deet, with or without neem seed extract or citronella, and citronella, with or without neem, did not reduce fleas significantly. The results show that azadirachtin reduced fleas in a dose-dependent manner in flea-contaminated environments. In cats, the combination killed most fleas within 24 h, providing effective flea control for 7 days. The results suggest that Deet with citronella potentiated the effect of azadirachtin on C. felis.[1]


  1. Effects of azadirachtin on Ctenocephalides felis in the dog and the cat. Guerrini, V.H., Kriticos, C.M. Vet. Parasitol. (1998) [Pubmed]
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