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Fungal Pathogen Reduces Potential for Malaria Transmission

Science  10 Jun 2005:
Vol. 308, Issue 5728, pp. 1638-1641
DOI: 10.1126/science.1108423

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Abstract

Using a rodent malaria model, we found that exposure to surfaces treated with fungal entomopathogens following an infectious blood meal reduced the number of mosquitoes able to transmit malaria by a factor of about 80. Fungal infection, achieved through contact with both solid surfaces and netting for durations well within the typical post-feed resting periods, was sufficient to cause >90% mortality. Daily mortality rates escalated dramatically around the time of sporozoite maturation, and infected mosquitoes showed reduced propensity to blood feed. Residual sprays of fungal biopesticides might replace or supplement chemical insecticides for malaria control, particularly in areas of high insecticide resistance.

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