AN ECO-BIO-SOCIAL APPROACH FOR THE SURVEILLANCE AND CONTROL OF AEDES AEGYPTI IN THE LOWER RIO GRAND VALLEY, TEXAS
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The mosquito Aedes aegypti is the primary vector of agents causing diseases such as dengue, chikungunya and Zika. Having a rigorous understanding of the ecological, biological and social factors that modulate vector-host interactions is critical for developing effective surveillance and control tools. We conducted several studies evaluating the eco-bio-social factors that modulate Ae. aegypti populations in communities of the Lower Rio Grande Valley (LRGV) of South Texas, one of the few areas with mosquito-borne transmission of Aedes-borne viruses in the continental US. While establishing a new stable isotope marking technique for adult Ae. aegypti, we determined the optimal dosage of isotopically enriched compounds (13C and 15N; 0.00035 g/liter) delivered to larval environment that successfully marked adults up to 60 days post emergence without changes to adult body size. We then used these isotopes as part of a unique study design documenting the ecological aspects of adult dispersal. The results suggest that Ae. aegypti adults disperse longer distances than previously reported for male (average= 242m) and unfed females (average= 201m). If distance increased the probability of detecting marked males slightly increased as well, the inverse was observed for unfed and gravid females. We also evaluated the eco-bio-social factors that modulate indoor and outdoor relative abundance of female Ae. aegypti. The results suggest that presence of window- mounted air conditioning units increased 5-fold the risk of female mosquito relative abundance indoor. Interestingly, increasing number of children <5 years of age modulated both indoor and outdoor relative abundance, with a 52% increase indoors and 30% decrease outdoors. Finally, we conducted an Autocidal Gravid Ovitrap (AGO) intervention to evaluate this as a control tool. We observed suppression between 77%- and 4-times lower female abundance when AGO coverage (number of AGO traps that surrounded a sentinel home) was high. However, we also observed that areas with low AGO coverage resulted with either no difference or an increase of female Ae. aegypti. These eco-bio- social results may help guide local vector control authorities in their fight against the transmission of Aedes-borne viruses in the LRGV and beyond.
SubjectMosquito, Vector Control, Multilevel modeling, Aedes aegypti, Stable Isotopes, Integrated Vector Management, Autocidal Gravid Ovitraps
Juarez Valdez, Jose G (2021). AN ECO-BIO-SOCIAL APPROACH FOR THE SURVEILLANCE AND CONTROL OF AEDES AEGYPTI IN THE LOWER RIO GRAND VALLEY, TEXAS. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A&M University. Available electronically from