Estimating contact rates between Metarhizium anisopliae–exposed males with female Aedes aegypti

Reyes-Villanueva, Filiberto, Russell, Tanya L., and Rodríguez-Pérez, Mario A. (2021) Estimating contact rates between Metarhizium anisopliae–exposed males with female Aedes aegypti. Frontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology, 11. 616679.

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Introduction: Effective control of Aedes aegypti will reduce the frequency and severity of outbreaks of dengue, chikungunya, and Zika; however, control programs are increasingly threatened by the rapid development of insecticide resistance. Thus, there is an urgent need for novel vector control tools, such as auto-dissemination of the entomopathogenic fungi Metarhizium anisopliae and Beauveria bassiana. The aim of this study was to estimate contact rates of M. anisopliae-exposed males with wild female Ae. aegypti. As a control the contact rates of untreated males with wild females was contrasted.

Methods: The study was conducted in Reynosa, Mexico. The treatment and control households (n = 15 per group) were geographically separated by an arid and hot area that naturally prevented the flight of males between arms. In each control household, 40 M. anisopliae-exposed male Ae. aegypti were released per week for 8 weeks (specimens were exposed to a concentration of 5.96 × 107 conidia/cm2 for 24 h; n = 4,800 males). In each control household, 40 untreated males were released per week for 8 weeks (n = 4,800 males). All specimens were dust-marked prior to release. Mosquito abundance was monitored with human landing collections, and captured Ae. aegypti were examined for any dust-marking.

Results: In the treatment households, the contact rate of Ae. aegypti females with marked, fungus-treated males was 14% (n = 29 females marked from 197). Where in the control households, the contact rate of females with marked, untreated males was only 6% (n = 22 marked from 365). In the treatment households the recapture rate of released males was at 5% and higher than that for the control households (which was 2%). Auto-dissemination of M. anisopliae from infected males to female Ae. aegypti was demonstrated through the recovery of an infected female from the floor of a household.

Conclusions: Overall, the contact rate between M. anisopliae-infected males with the natural female population was 60% higher than for the control group of healthy males. The results provide further support to the release of fungus-exposed males as a potentially useful strategy against Ae. aegypti, though further research is required.

Item ID: 70447
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2235-2988
Keywords: Aedes aegypti, auto-dissemination, biological control, dengue, males’ releases, Metarhizium anisopliae
Copyright Information: Copyright © 2021 Reyes-Villanueva, Russell and Rodríguez-Pérez. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.
Date Deposited: 23 Nov 2021 02:32
FoR Codes: 42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4206 Public health > 420699 Public health not elsewhere classified @ 100%
SEO Codes: 18 ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT > 1806 Terrestrial systems and management > 180602 Control of pests, diseases and exotic species in terrestrial environments @ 100%
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