Study on Advanced Measures for Mosquito Control by Insecticide Vaporisers

  • Yoshiki Tsukamoto, Judge Business School, Master of Business Administration, 1st year
  • Glen Whitehead, Judge Business School, Master in Technology Policy, 1st year

The project, Study on Advanced Measures for Mosquito Control by Insecticide Vaporisers, aims to examine the feasibility of utilising insecticide vaporisers to enhance mosquito control in rural Republic of Kenya (hereinafter Kenya). The project starts in the middle of April and completes in early August. The primary focus is the off-site research and interview about historical initiatives, current strategies and products for mosquito control, followed by the on-site research in Kenya.

In Kenya, the electrification rate has increased from 14%[1] in 2002 to 18%[2] in 2012. Because of this improvement, more people now spend their evenings socialising and studying with artificial lights. Recent scientific discoveries in mosquito behaviour, and improvement in people’s quality of life, provide evidence for the need to introduce active mosquito control measures that can supplement passive LLTINs (Long-Lasting Insecticide Nets), which are commonly used during sleep to reduce the risk of infection from diseases like malaria.

WHO started its activities to reduce the number of deaths from malaria in 1957, and established the Roll Back Malaria (RBM) Initiative in 1998 with World Bank, UNICEF, and UNDP. The approach of RBM was: to find and cure Malaria at early stage, to control vectors (mosquitos), to prevent potential pandemics, and to enhance researcher’s abilities to monitor the effects of Malaria. To control vectors, the WHO has distributed LLTINs to homes with the aim of preventing infection during sleep. However, mosquitos have evolved their behaviour[3] and developed resistance[4] to existing insecticides. Furthermore, at-risk fishing communities have misused LLTINs[5]. In addition to the UN-related organisations, several NGOs and business consortiums are engaged in this topic in Sub-Saharan Africa, such as GBCHealth and PSI (Population Services International). The team will try to reach those organisations to gather information about reference projects or initiatives, and to explore the potential for cooperation.

The study focuses on Kenya, especially the shores around Lake Victoria, due to its proximity to the severest cases in the country. During the first four weeks, the team will collect information and data about historical initiatives and current strategies for mosquito control in Kenya to guide the selection of target villages or households. After the basic research, the team will evaluate the feasibility of a variety of insecticide vaporisers by comparing components, selling price, and power source. The study, in parallel, will define and compare the characteristics of major anopheles species through existing reports and data source. The team will also extract meteorological, astronomical, and environmental factors that may influence mosquito population and behavioural changes to define which kind of vaporiser would be most effective.

Through the on-site research from the end of June the team will clarify the daily routine of villagers and their expectations. This is necessary to identify potential situations and sites for vaporiser use, as well as any required modifications. The team will also study the goods currently used for mosquito control during the period of the on-site research.

[1] International Energy Agency. (2002). World Energy Outlook 2002

[2] International Energy Agency. (2012). World Energy Outlook 2012

[3] In 2012, a new Kenyan species is discovered biting people earlier in the evening, before current malaria control techniques become effective (http://www.sci-news.com/biology/article00625.html).

[4] In 2012, Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (IRD) revealed the adaption of mosquitos (http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121105081503.htm)

[5] In 2008, unforeseen misuses of bed nets in fishing villages along Lake Victoria (http://www.malariajournal.com/content/7/1/165)

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