Disrupting Steroid Signals in Adult Anopheles
Flaminia Catteruccia of President and Fellows of Harvard College in the U.S. will produce fabrics and nets treated with the dibenzoylhydrazine (DBH) compound methoxyfenozide, which is toxic to malaria-transmitting mosquitoes, to prevent these insects from entering households and spreading disease. The compound is non-toxic to mammals but disrupts steroid signaling pathways in the mosquito, which is a different mechanism than existing insecticides, reducing lifespan and causing sterility. They will combine it with insecticide and evaluate different formulations on geographically diverse mosquito species in the laboratory. The best formulations will then be tested on specific field-collected outdoor mosquito populations from southern Africa.