ഡെങ്കിപ്പനിയോട് പോരാടാൻ മനുഷ്യരെ സഹായിക്കുന്ന പരാന്നഭോജികൾ? – ന്യൂ ഇന്ത്യൻ എക്സ്പ്രസ്
Express News Service
COIMBATORE: At a time when the entire State machinery is gearing up to control mosquito breeding, the results of a study at Bharathiar University may help augment the efforts. A team at the university has found the presence of the parasitic bacteria Wolbachia in Aedes aegypti mosquitoes — the primary source of transmission of viruses like Zika, dengue, chikungunya. This parasite has been found to reduce the transmission of the disease-causing viruses.
The bacteria, though commonly present in many insects, is not usually found in the Aedes aegypti mosquito. Research by The World Mosquito Program has shown that introducing the bacteria in this species of mosquito help reduce the transmission of viruses to people. It is this parasite that the team has found in mosquitoes collected from four sites in Coimbatore.
The team attempted to find the intracellular bacteria in the Aedes aegypti species in Coimbatore. They detected the Wolbachia species and identified the strain as supergroup-B. If these bacteria-holding mosquitoes were to increase in number among the native species, it could result in the eradication of disease transmission and help control mosquito population. When male mosquitoes with Wolbachia mate with female mosquitoes without the bacteria, those females will lay eggs but they will not hatch.
According to Associate Professor SR Prabagaran, biological control is the way forward to combat mosquito breeding when mechanical strategies like chemical spraying and fogging have proved to be unsuccessful. The use of Wolbachia — like the research done by The World Mosquito Program — is the most popular, he said. “This strategy not only reduces the mosquito population but also the transmission of arboviruses,” he explained.