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      The future of microbial insecticides as vector control agents.

      Journal of the American Mosquito Control Association

      Animals, Humans, Insect Vectors, microbiology, parasitology, virology, Pest Control, Biological

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          Insect vectors of human diseases are subject to diseases of their own caused by viruses, bacteria, fungi, protozoans, and nematodes. Over the past 30 years, many members of these groups have been evaluated as vector control agents, particularly for mosquito control. Most pathogens and nematodes occur primarily in larvae, and are only effective against this stage. The principal candidate control agents studied include iridescent and nuclear polyhedrosis viruses, the bacteria Bacillus thuringiensis and Bacillus sphaericus, the fungi Lagenidium giganteum, Culicinomyces clavosporus, and species of the genus Coelomomyces, the protozoan Nosema algerae, and the mermithid nematode Romanomermis culicivorax. Of these, the only one considered an operational success is the bacterium, Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. israelensis (B.t.i.), which has proven useful for control of both mosquito and blackfly larvae in programs where larviciding has been traditionally employed as a vector control tactic. The reasons for the success of B.t.i. are its cost-effectiveness and relative ease of use, which are due, respectively, to the ability of B.t.i. to be grown on artificial media and the development of formulations that can be applied using conventional insecticide application technology. Because few microbial insecticides are cost-effective, and those that are are only effective against larvae, these agents will likely play only a minor, but in some cases important, role in most future vector control programs.

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          Animals, Humans, Insect Vectors, microbiology, parasitology, virology, Pest Control, Biological


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