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      A New Classification System for the Actions of IRS Chemicals Traditionally Used For Malaria Control

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          Knowledge of how mosquitoes respond to insecticides is of paramount importance in understanding how an insecticide functions to prevent disease transmission. A suite of laboratory assays was used to quantitatively characterize mosquito responses to toxic, contact irritant, and non-contact spatial repellent actions of standard insecticides. Highly replicated tests of these compounds over a range of concentrations proved that all were toxic, some were contact irritants, and even fewer were non-contact repellents. Of many chemicals tested, three were selected for testing in experimental huts to confirm that chemical actions documented in laboratory tests are also expressed in the field. The laboratory tests showed the primary action of DDT is repellent, alphacypermethrin is irritant, and dieldrin is only toxic. These tests were followed with hut studies in Thailand against marked-released populations. DDT exhibited a highly protective level of repellency that kept mosquitoes outside of huts. Alphacypermethrin did not keep mosquitoes out, but its strong irritant action caused them to prematurely exit the treated house. Dieldrin was highly toxic but showed no irritant or repellent action. Based on the combination of laboratory and confirmatory field data, we propose a new paradigm for classifying chemicals used for vector control according to how the chemicals actually function to prevent disease transmission inside houses. The new classification scheme will characterize chemicals on the basis of spatial repellent, contact irritant and toxic actions.

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          Most cited references 24

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          A Method of Computing the Effectiveness of an Insecticide

           W. Abbott (1925)
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            Simplification of adult mosquito bioassays through use of time-mortality determinations in glass bottles.

            A simple method is described for treating 250-ml glass Wheaton bottles with insecticide, and using them as test chambers for detecting insecticide resistance in mosquito and sandfly populations. The methods for treating bottles, obtaining baseline data, and applying this technique to insects from the field are described. Sample data are presented from tests run on different vector species using a variety of insecticides. Time-mortality data from the bottle bioassay are presented alongside results from biochemical detection methods applied to the same mosquito population. The potential role, advantages, and limitations of the time-mortality bottle method are discussed.
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              A verandah-trap hut for studying the house-frequenting habits of mosquitoes and for assessing insecticides. 3. The effect of DDT on behavior and mortality.


                Author and article information

                Role: Academic Editor
                PLoS ONE
                PLoS ONE
                Public Library of Science (San Francisco, USA )
                8 August 2007
                : 2
                : 8
                [1 ]Department of Preventive Medicine and Biometrics, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, Maryland, United States of America
                [2 ]Department of Entomology, Kasetsart University, Bangkok, Thailand
                [3 ]Office of Disease Prevention and Control, Ministry of Public Health, Chiang Mai, Thailand
                [4 ]Chemicals Affecting Insect Behavior Laboratory, United States Department of Agriculture, Beltsville, Maryland, United States of America
                St. George's, University of London, United Kingdom
                Author notes
                * To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: jgrieco@

                Conceived and designed the experiments: JG NA DR TC WS KC. Performed the experiments: JG NA TC WS. Analyzed the data: JG NA DR TC WS MS. Contributed reagents/materials/analysis tools: KC. Wrote the paper: JG NA DR TC KC MS.

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Public Domain declaration which stipulates that, once placed in the public domain, this work may be freely reproduced, distributed, transmitted, modified, built upon, or otherwise used by anyone for any lawful purpose.
                Pages: 11
                Research Article
                Infectious Diseases
                Chemistry/Applied Chemistry
                Infectious Diseases/Protozoal Infections
                Public Health and Epidemiology/Infectious Diseases



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