Get out the bug spray! Mosquito season is upon us in Colorado and most of the US...
Near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) measures the absorption of light by organic molecules; NIRS is a noninvasive spectroscopic method that uses the near-infrared region of the electromagnetic spectrum (from about 700 nm to 2500 nm).
ASD learned last year that our LabSpec© NIR analyzer is used in the fight against Zika and Dengue.
NIRS was first used to simultaneously predict the age and species identity of two morphologically identical malaria vectors1. Malaria, caused by a mosquito-borne blood parasite, is the deadliest mosquito-transmitted disease; spread by infected mosquito species Anopheles2. Zika is a mosquito-transmitted viral infection, which is closely related to Dengue; spread by infected mosquitoes of the Aedes species2.
Zika and Dengue are viral diseases that infect well over 400 million people each year3. In humans, infection by the Dengue virus results in fevers, headaches, rashes and severe joint and muscle pains3. Infection by the Zika virus typically causes a mild illness known as Zika fever. More significantly, prenatal Zika infection has been associated with microcephaly and other serious brain anomalies.
Numerous studies have shown that infecting Zika- and Dengue-carrying mosquitoes with a targeted strain of the Wolbachia bacterium greatly reduces the likelihood that the mosquitoes carry the Zika or Dengue virus1,3. The release of Wolbachia-infected mosquitoes has been shown to rapidly spread and can infect over 80 percent of the local mosquito population.
In order to judge the effectiveness of a release program, wild mosquitoes must be trapped and screened for the presence of the Wolbachia bacterium. ASD's June webinar speaker, Dr. Maggy Sikulu-Lord, and colleagues have developed an NIR-based method for rapidly screening Wolbachia infection in mosquitoes. Using ASD’s field portable LabSpec NIR analyzer, the researchers have been able to distinguish between infected and uninfected mosquitoes with 85-95 percent accuracy, enabling them to rapidly determine the effectiveness of the program.
"This information will enable quick identification of high-risk areas, prioritize efforts and resources and measure the impacts of vector control interventions," said Sikulu-Lord.
Learn about the benefits of using ASD’s LabSpec as an alternative surveillance method for mosquito control programs in our upcoming June 28th webinar, "NIR & Mosquito-Borne Diseases".
In this webinar you will learn about:
- The application of NIRS for simultaneous prediction of age and species of Anopheles malaria vectors
- Preservation techniques suitable for samples prior to NIRS analysis
- Application of NIRS for predicting age of Aedes aegypti
- Application of NIRS for detecting Wolbachia in mosquitoes
- Application of NIRS for detecting Arbovirus infections including Zika and dengue in mosquitoes
- The use of NIRS to investigate insects of medical and Agricultural importance
- Advantages of NIRS over existing techniques for similar purposes
Click below to register for our webinar on June 28th, "NIR & Mosquito-Borne Diseases". Not able to attend live? All registrants will receive a recorded version of the webinar a few days after the event.