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The elimination of the onchocerciasis vector from the island of Bioko as a result of larviciding by the WHO African Programme for Onchocerciasis Control

Traore, S., Wilson, M. D., Sima, A., Barro, T., Diallo, A., Ake, A., Coulibaly, S., Cheke, R. A., Meyer, R. R. F., Mas, J., McCall, Philip ORCID:, Post, R. J., Zoure, H., Noma, M., Yameogo, L., Seketeli, A. V. and Amazigo, U. V. (2009) 'The elimination of the onchocerciasis vector from the island of Bioko as a result of larviciding by the WHO African Programme for Onchocerciasis Control'. Acta Tropica, Vol 111, Issue 3, pp. 211-218.

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The island of Bioko is part of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea and is the only island in the World to have endemic onchocerciasis. The disease is hyperendemic and shows a forest-type epidemiology with low levels of blindness and high levels of skin disease, and the whole population of 68,000 is estimated to be at risk. Control of onchocerciasis began in 1990 using ivermectin and this yielded significant clinical benefits but transmission was not interrupted. Feasibility and preparatory studies carried out between 1995 and 2002 confirmed the probable isolation of the vector on the island, the high vectorial efficiency of the Bioko form of Simulium yahense, the seasonality of river flow, blackfly breeding and biting densities, and the distribution of the vector breeding sites. It was proposed that larviciding should be carried out from January to April, when most of the island's rivers were dry or too low to support Simulium damnosum s.l., and that most rivers would not need to be treated above 500 m altitude because they were too small to support the breeding of S. damnosum s.l. Larviciding (with temephos) would need to be carried out by helicopter (because of problems of access by land), supplemented by ground-based delivery. Insecticide susceptibility trials showed that the Bioko form was highly susceptible to temephos, and insecticide carry was tested in the rivers by assessing the length of river in which S. damnosum s.l. larvae were killed below a temephos dosing point. Regular fly catching points were established in 1999 to provide pre-control biting densities, and to act as monitoring points for control efforts. An environmental impact assessment concluded that the proposed control programme could be expected to do little damage, and a large-scale larviciding trial using ground-based applications of temephos (Abate 20EC) throughout the northern (accessible) part of the island was carried out for five weeks from 12 February 2001. Following this, a first attempt to eliminate the vectors was conducted using helicopter and ground-based applications of temephos from February to May 2003, but this was not successful because some vector populations persisted and subsequently spread throughout the island. A second attempt from January to May 2005 aimed to treat all flowing watercourses and greatly increased the number of treatment points. This led to the successful elimination of the vector. The last biting S. damnosum s.l. was caught in March 2005 and none have been found since then for more than 3 years. (C) 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Traore, S. Wilson, M. D. Sima, A. Barro, T. Diallo, A. Ake, A. Coulibaly, S. Cheke, R. A. Meyer, R. R. F. Mas, J. McCall, P. J. Post, R. J. Zoure, H. Noma, M. Yameogo, L. Seketeli, A. V. Amazigo, U. V.
Subjects: WC Communicable Diseases > Tropical and Parasitic Diseases > WC 800 Helminthiasis
WA Public Health > Preventive Medicine > WA 110 Prevention and control of communicable diseases. Transmission of infectious diseases
WA Public Health > Preventive Medicine > WA 240 Disinfection. Disinfestation. Pesticides (including diseases caused by)
WC Communicable Diseases > Tropical and Parasitic Diseases > WC 755 Epidemiology
QX Parasitology > Insects. Other Parasites > QX 650 Insect vectors
WC Communicable Diseases > Tropical and Parasitic Diseases > WC 885 Onchocerciasis
Faculty: Department: Biological Sciences > Vector Biology Department
Digital Object Identifer (DOI):
Depositing User: Users 183 not found.
Date Deposited: 25 Feb 2010 13:16
Last Modified: 14 Dec 2021 10:22


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