Certain mosquito species are responsible for the transmission of human diseases such as malaria and dengue in developing countries across the globe (90% of all reported malaria cases are in sub-Saharan Africa). An estimated 3000 African children die as a result of malaria each day. According to recent World Health Organization (WHO) figures, this mosquito-transmitted disease kills over one million people a year and causes an estimated 300 to 500 million acute cases per year.
Syngenta in vector control – experience and know-how to provide innovative disease prevention tools
Syngenta’s corporate goals include those dedicated to the improvement of health and quality of life. Syngenta Vector Control delivers this commitment by playing a leading role in the prevention of vector borne disease transmission through its portfolio of mosquito control products and partnerships with professional disease control programs worldwide. We are committed to being a leading partner in the fight against vector borne diseases through the ICON vector control portfolio and long-established experience of working successfully with multiple partners across the globe.
ICON in vector control – Impact and sustainability in disease prevention
Syngenta is proud to extend the heritage of the ICON family with an expanded and strengthened portfolio for disease vector control. This innovative and market-leading offer is reinforced, as always, by our training and education initiatives, to form the Syngenta integrated approach to vector management.
We believe an integrated approach to vector control is vital to ensuring that programs are effective and meet the targets of our partners, whilst also being sustainable in the longer term. Our broadened portfolio ensures that we are able to offer our partners highly effective products across the major vector control interventions – indoor residual spraying (IRS), space spraying, larviciding and insecticide-treated nets (ITNs)
Therefore, whatever the local situation or need for vector control technology, rest assured ICON has an answer.
Malaria continues to threaten a significant proportion of the global population including many of the world’s most disadvantaged communities. This leads to mortality, morbidity and reduced economic development. In order to defeat the disease, a sustainable and integrated approach is required combining effective vector control and drug therapy supported by local capacity building and effective monitoring and evaluation. Pregnant women and children under the age of 5 are especially at risk. In highly infested regions of Africa, women are more than four times as likely to suffer clinical attacks of malaria during pregnancy than at other times; but only half as likely to survive bouts of life-threatening illness. Malaria, especially when combined with inadequate nutrition, causes many complications of pregnancy and stillbirths.
Malaria is caused by protozoan parasites of the genus Plasmodium of which there are four species that infect humans, Plasmodium falciparum, P.ovale, P.vivax and P.malariae. The parasite is transmitted via the bite of infected blood feeding female Anopheles mosquitoes. Once inside the human host, parasites undergo a series of changes as part of its life-cycle. This allows it to evade the human immune system and infect the liver and red blood cells. The symptoms of malaria begin 9 to 14 days after infection and may include fever, headache, vomiting and other flu-like symptoms. However, depending on the type of plasmodium infection it is possible that a person may feel ill as early as 7 days or as late as 1 year later. Some parasites can even remain dormant in the liver for between several months and up to about 4 years after a person is bitten by an infected mosquito.
Control of vector mosquitoes through indoor residual spraying of insecticides or sleeping under an insecticide treated net has been shown to be an effective tool in reducing malaria transmission.
Dengue and dengue hemorrhagic fever is present throughout the Americas, South-east Asia, Africa and the Eastern Mediterranean. It is becoming increasingly important as infections are becoming more widespread and it is estimated that two fifth’s of the worlds population is now at risk from this disease.
There are four closely related types of virus, from the genus Flavivirus, that cause dengue. These viruses are transmitted to humans through the bite of infective female Aedes mosquitoes. Once the mosquito has acquired the virus, while feeding on the blood of an infected person, it is capable of transmitting the virus for the rest of its life. Infected female mosquitoes may also transmit the virus to their offspring by via the eggs.
The symptoms of dengue are high fever, severe headache, backache, joint pains, nausea and vomiting, eye pain, and rash. Generally, younger children have a milder illness than older children and adults.
A person will develop dengue fever as a result of initial exposure to one virus. Upon recovery the patient will now be immune to this single type. If a second infection occurs with a different type of the virus, the patient stands a greater risk of developing dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF), a more serious and potentially fatal disease.
Dengue hemorrhagic fever is characterized by a fever that lasts from 2 to 7 days, with symptoms that occur with many other illnesses such as nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and headache. This is followed by hemorrhaging and possibly internal bleeding. Without proper treatment, the patient may die within 24 hours.
Control of vector mosquitoes through the use of larviciding or space spraying is currently the only method of controlling or preventing dengue and DHF.
How disease affects economic growth as well as individuals
Effective control of malaria and dengue would reduce human suffering substantially. On an economic level, "poor health via disability from diseases such as malaria reduces incomes by as much as 12 percent in some studies", according to the WHO. The impact of malaria control on the general standard of living in affected areas would therefore be significant, when considering that agriculture and other forms of employment necessitating manual labor are major job providers.
United efforts to find health solutions
As a global provider of insecticides, Syngenta collaborates closely with a variety of partners, including health organizations, humanitarian aid agencies and academic institutions, to ensure the availability of mosquito control products in affected areas and to provide education as to their safe and effective use.
- Collaboration occurs on several levels,
- evaluation of effectiveness and safety,
- procurement for emergency relief efforts,
- monitoring for resistance, and
- development of new vector control tools.