News


Free Online Course: The Global Challenge of Vector Borne Diseases and How to Control Them (Please go to the “Training” Page to see more on this…excellent opportunity)


National Plan of Action 2020-2024 VBDs in Pakistan

Kindly find below the link to the first-ever developed “National Plan of Action 2020-2024” for sustainable management of VBDs in Pakistan. It describes the vision and priorities for control of VBDs of public health importance in Pakistan. The development of this document is a momentous achievement of NMCP-Pakistan and its Provincial Malaria/VBDs Programs using their own expertise and knowledge, and can be a helpful tool for other countries facing issues with VBDs (malaria, dengue, chikungunya, leishmaniasis, Crimean Congo Haemorrhygic, Yellow Fever, Japanese Encephalitis, etc) to develop their own PoAs in their local context.

Please feel free to contact NMCP-Pakistan if you need any clarification or assistance (Mr Muhammad Mukhtar, mukhtarnih@gmail.com).

http://dmc.gov.pk/documents/pdfs/VBDs.pdf



TDR’s guidance document on multisectoral approaches published online

TDR’s guidance document on Multisectoral Approach to the Prevention and Control of Vector-Borne Diseases is published. You can find it here


https://www.who.int/tdr/publications/year/2020/mca-for-prevention-and-control-of-vbds/en/

If you have any questions, kindly contact directly Dr Florence Fouque (fouquef@who.int) or Dr Qingxia Zhong (zhongq@who.int).
Happy reading


Contribution Invitation – Insects, Special Issue – Innovative Holistic and Transdisciplinary Approaches to Control Vector-borne Diseases

Dr. Hans J. Overgaard from Norwegian University of Life Sciences is serving as the Guest Editor of the Special Issue entitled “Innovative Holistic and Transdisciplinary Approaches to Control Vector-borne Diseases” for the journal Insects (http://www.mdpi.com/journal/insects/). The website of this special issue can be found at https://www.mdpi.com/journal/insects/special_issues/vector-borne_control.

Submission Deadline: 31 May 2021. Please contact Dr. Overgaard if you are interested to contribute and for further information.

Kind regards,

Guest Editor

Dr. Hans J. Overgaard


Invitation Webinar training: What you should Know about LLINs| Thursday July 23rd 2020

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Save the date Thursday July 23rd 2020

Dear partner

Impact Santé Afrique (ISA) is pleased to invite you to his next webinar event with the collaboration of Vestergaard. 

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT LONG-LASTING

INSECTICIDAL NETS AND THEIR IMPACT

Are you familiar with the standard LLINs? PBO? New Generation? How to maintain LLINs? What is their impact?

All these questions will be answered during this webinar. It is free and open to Civil Society Organizations, Media, Parliamentarians, Private Sector, community members and all other stakeholders in the fight against malaria.

Date: Thursday July 23rd 2020

Time: 09:00-10:00 am UTC / Ghana time

          10:00-11:00 am Cameroon/Nigeria time

          11:00-12:00 am Zambia/Rwanda time

          12:00-13:00 am Tanzania time

*Please verify your country’s time

To register Click here

It’s free! But with limited spaces

Please check your spams after registration because zoom.us will send you reminders directly.


Click here to see a tutorial video for zoom.us meeting

For more information isa.academy@impactsante.org     http://impactsante.org/

Public comment on preferred product characteristics (PPCs) for malaria vector control interventions

The WHO Global Malaria Programme (GMP) is seeking public comment on preferred product characteristics (PPCs) for malaria vector control interventions. PPCs are becoming a key tool for WHO to incentivize and guide the development of urgently needed health products. 

More information here:

https://www.who.int/news-room/articles-detail/public-consultation-on-preferred-product-characteristics-for-malaria-vector-control-interventions


Survey COVID-19 impact on vector control

Global Vector Hub (https://globalvectorhub.lshtm.ac.uk/) is trying to assess how the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting vector control efforts and related activities globally.

Are you working in vector control, vector research, public health, policy or funding? How is the COVID-19 pandemic affecting your work? The Global Vector Hub would love to hear from you! Please click here to complete our short survey:

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSecg6E13CMvauhCcRgr0bBDooQQTRxkKyEYIC0PPKtToAOcbA/viewform?vc=0&c=0&w=1

If you have any questions, please contact directly Frederik Seelig frederik.seelig@lshtm.ac.uk


Entomological Surveillance Planning Tool (ESPT)

Hello colleagues, 
The final Entomological Surveillance Planning Tool (ESPT), an operational decision-support tool for national malaria programs to plan entomological surveillance activities, interpret entomological data, and guide and advance data-driven vector control decisions is shared in this message, together with the 2-page document summarizing the ESPT purpose and intended use. The ESPT was developed by the University of California, San Francisco’s Malaria Elimination Initiative and the University of Notre Dame (ND) with funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. An Entomological Surveillance Working Group (ESWG) of national, regional, and global experts guided the design and iteration of the tool, and an early draft of the ESPT was piloted with national malaria programs and partners in several countries across Mesoamerica, southern Africa, and the Greater Mekong Subregion throughout 2018/2019.
 
The ESPT will be available in Spanish, French, and Portuguese by the end of 2020.

The ESPT is a new addition to the MEI Malaria Elimination Toolkit .The MEI toolkit offers a suite of evidence-based, user-friendly tools to strengthen national and district-level malaria elimination programs. Please visit the ESPT webpage for an overview of the ESPT.
 
Training materials on the ESPT will also be available by the end of 2020. If you are interested in using or learning more about the ESPT, please contact the following individuals: Élodie Vajda (also French speaker) elodie.vajda@ucsf.edu, Allison Tatarsky allison.tatarsky@ucsf.edu, and Neil Lobo nlobo@nd.edu


The Global Vector Hub-Beta has now gone live!

The Global Vector Hub at LSHTM & ARCTEC decided to launch an early version of the GVH (‘GVH-Beta’) to address the critical need to continue to fight vector-borne diseases, share knowledge and provide information on how to protect communities, build capacity and manage health systems. This will be a pared-down version without the data and networking aspects of the full version, which will be launched subsequently. Instead, we will focus on resources on vector control to assist in capacity building, and by providing comprehensive information packs for different groups of users (public health officials; vector control agents; researchers, general public) and diseases (malaria, Aedes-borne viral diseases, Chagas disease and Leishmaniases).

The Global Vector Hub-Beta has now gone live! Please see the new website here:

https://globalvectorhub.lshtm.ac.uk/

If you have questions, please direct them to Frederik Seelig, Frederik.Seelig@lshtm.ac.uk


The Effects of layering IRS with LLINs –An Interview of Experts: June 25th 9Am-Please join!

As resistance to pyrethroid insecticides continues to spread and decisions about how to deploy specific interventions are becoming increasingly complex, questions remain about the best methods for layering new tools to maximize program impact. Join the discussion on June 25th at 9AM EDT via Zoom (details below) as we interview experts on the effects of layering IRS and LLINs from the Unitaid-funded NgenIRS Project.

Our experts:

  • Sergi Alonso, PhD, ISGlobal in conversation with Rose Zulliger, PhD, US President’s Malaria Initiative/Center for Disease Control, Division of Parasitic Diseases and Malaria
    Discussion topic
    : Evidence from a cluster-randomized control trial in Mopeia, Mozambique on the direct and indirect costs of IRS with non-pyrethroid insecticide in a high burden area of Mozambique with high coverage of LLINs.
  • Ellie Sherrard-Smith, PhD, Imperial College in conversation with Helen Jamet, PhD, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
    Discussion topic
    : Using models to make product layering decisions.
  • Joshua Yukich, PhD, Tulane University in conversation with Alexandra Cameron, PhD, Unitaid
    Discussion topic
    : Meta-analysis of the cost and cost-effectiveness of 3GIRS products in Ghana, Mali, Mozambique, and Uganda in areas with access to LLINs.  

Please register at the link below and submit any questions you have for the experts in advance. Looking forward to seeing you!

Register here: https://path.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_NuoQBRZQSfSh2FhDpDUZIQ  

Sincerely,

Molly Robertson

Senior Evidence Lead, NgenIRS


APMEN TechTalks – ‘Forest-goers and residual malaria’ – Webinar on June 9, 4:00pm Singapore time

The next ‘APMEN TechTalks’ webinar, hosted by the APMEN Vector Control Working Group is scheduled on June 9, 4:00 pm Singapore time.

You can register here: https://tinyurl.com/apmenwebinar3

Kindly send your webinar-related questions to Dr. Leo Braack: l.braack@malariaconsortium.org

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COVID-19 and malaria related documents

There is a lot of justified concern regarding the potential impact of COVID-19 on malaria service delivery and how to continue Control activities despite the need for safety, so Konstantina Boutsika at RBM VCWG has kindly made us aware of a list of COVID-19 and malaria related documents on the RBM webpage
https://endmalaria.org/resources/library/covid19/4481


New publication: The durability of long-lasting insecticidal nets distributed to the households between 2009 and 2013 in Nepal

By Prakash Ghimire, Komal Raj Rijal, Nabaraj Adhikari, Garib Das Thakur, Baburam Marasini, Upendra Thapa Shrestha, Megha Raj Banjara, Shishir Kumar Pant, Bipin Adhikari, Shyam Prakash Dumre, Nihal Singh, Olivier Pigeon, Theeraphap Chareonviriyaphap, Irwin Chavez, Leonard Ortega and Jeffrey Hii. The main objective of this study was to assess the durability through assessment of community usage, physical integrity, residual bio-efficacy, and chemical retention in LLINs: Interceptor®, Yorkool®,
and PermaNet ®2.0 which were used in Nepal during 2009 through 2013. Find it at https://tropmedhealth.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s41182-020-00223-w


New article Solomon Islands residual malaria underlying causes

There is a great new paper just out describing human behaviour predisposing towards malaria transmission by An farauti which is an early evening biter. Worth having a look at. Find it here: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-020-63994-6. The paper title and details: Pollard, Maclaren, Russel, Burkot. Protecting the peri-domestic environment: the challenge for eliminating residual malaria. 2020. Scientific Reports 10. Article 7018.


New Webinar on the Vector LearningXchange —- How Geospatial Data Improves Planning and Implementation in Vector Control

Webinar! Mapping 101 with Maxar: How Geospatial Data Improves Planning and Implementation in Vector Control

Presenters: Matt Hallas, Maxar and Solomon Wasse, PMI VectorLink Ethiopia

When: Thursday, May 14th 10:00 AM EST

This webinar will focus on the application of geospatial data for the purposes of improving the planning and implementation of health interventions. Satellite imagery and data derived from high-resolution imagery can be used to accurately map the distribution of populations, which is particularly beneficial in regions that have historically been unmapped. After quickly covering the basics of extracting information from satellite imagery, such as the extent of buildings and roads, we will transition into several use cases that highlight the utility of high-resolution data. Using a geospatial dataset detailing all of the buildings in a country, our partners have achieved significant reductions in their operational costs due to time and resource savings. We will walk through 2 distinct use cases where this data provided immediate value: 1) Planning and implementing an IRS campaign in Mozambique and, 2) a use case example from PMI VectorLink Ethiopia using satellite imagery for enumeration activities.

https://www.vectorlearningxchange.com/event/webinar-mapping-101-with-maxar-how-geospatial-data-improves-planning-and-implementation-in-vector-control/


NgenIRS Evidence Launched! // Project Overview, Evidence Slides and Video – Preview

News alert from RBM VCWG:

On December 31st, 2019, the Unitaid funded NgenIRS project came to an end. The NgenIRS team, led by IVCC and made up of colleagues from PATH and Abt Associates, worked in partnership with 16 malaria control and elimination programmes across Africa, the US President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI), the Global Fund and three insecticide manufacturers. The downward trend in IRS use was reversed and the resulting expansion of use has resulted in significant public health impact, savings in commodity costs and new evidence showing the cost-effectiveness of third generation IRS (3GIRS). IVCC have launched a collection of evidence materials, consisting of a video, a project overview and evidence slides (available in both English and French). These materials are available for free download on the IVCC website. These materials have been prepared to show the impact of the NgenIRS project and are intended for use by partners and stakeholders who need to communicate the contribution of 3GIRS products to the reduction of malaria.
https://www.ivcc.com/market-access/ngenirs/
https://www.ivcc.com/resource-library/#ngenirs

Malaria ‘completely stopped’ by microbe

Scientists have found a microsporidian present in about 5% of wild mosquitoes in east Africa that completely blocks infection of the mosquito by Plasmodium. It can be sexually transmitted between mosquitoes. Work is continuing to understand the dynamics of the infection. I read the article and for the first time in a long while thought that maybe this is indeed something that could make a difference in malaria control. Read more on this at https://www.bbc.com/news/health-52530828

Unique Namibian trial finds smart interventions reduce malaria transmission by 75%

This article outlined below refers to work done in Namibia (Africa) but it is just as relevant for Asia-Pacific. The scientific study (published in The Lancet) has findings which, if applied in core residual malaria settings, would greatly assist NMCP’s in malaria elimination objectives. Read it, is is worth it!

The malaria trial conducted in northern Namibia demonstrates how malaria incidence can be reduced by up to 75% in settings where malaria transmission is mostly low but persistent, and plagued by sporadic outbreaks of higher numbers of malaria cases.

In this study, researchers conducted a trial to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of two interventions: (i) reactive focal mass drug administration (rfMDA) and (ii) reactive focal vector control (RAVC), and their combination.

This trial is unique because it is the first randomized controlled trial of rfMDA and/or RAVC. Study communities were randomly assigned to receive either rfMDA, or RAVC, or the combination, or neither of these two interventions (the latter being the control group).

“We found that reactive focal mass drug administration and reactive focal vector control, when implemented alone and in combination, significantly reduced malaria transmission among targeted populations in the Zambezi region of Namibia,” says Koekemoer. “Furthermore, the two interventions, when used in combination, had an additive effect – reducing rates of new malaria cases by 75%”.

You can find a shortened version of the full paper at https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2020-04/uotw-unt042520.php

New Review article out on P vivax (and P falciparum) epidemiology

Thought you may be interested in having a look at this article, now out in “Trends in Parasitology”…
Plasmodium vivax in the Era of the Shrinking P. falciparum Map
Ric N. Price, Robert J. Commons, Katherine E. Battle, Kamala Thriemer, Kamini Mendis

Tailoring malaria interventions in the COVID-19 response

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the malaria community must remain committed to supporting the prevention of malaria infection, illness and death through preventive and case management services, while maintaining a safe environment for patients, clients and staff. Deaths due to malaria and its comorbidities (anaemia, undernutrition, etc.) must continue to be prevented.
The attached document provides overarching principles as well as specific technical guidance for malaria interventions, including prevention of infection and disease, care and treatment of cases, testing, clinical services, supply chain and laboratory activities, during this time of the evolving COVID-19 pandemic. This document will be updated as the situation changes.
Also the link is here: https://www.who.int/malaria/publications/atoz/tailoring-malaria-interventions-in-the-covid-19-response/en/

IT STARTS WITH YOU!!!

The theme of World Malaria Day 2020 — Zero Malaria Starts with Me — is a movement dedicated to driving action and making change, and this starts with YOU! Get your leaders to take action using the resources available at zeromalaria.africaSTART NOW

Feedback on 15th Annual Meeting of RBM VCWG
Geneva, Switzerland, 3 – 5 February 2020

The 2020 Vector Control Working Group annual meeting had the largest participation to date!

The RBM VCWG 15th annual meeting was another exciting gathering of over 310 participants from over 54 countries with broad representation from endemic countries, research and academia, operational control programs and private sector. The meeting continued to be an effective forum for best practice sharing and hearing about the challenges experienced in countries in the implementation of effective vector control. It was also an opportunity to learn about new tools and access programs (NgenIRS and New Nets Project) which are being deployed in operational or research phases.  The meeting presentations included both the existing core interventions as well as new methods to address residual transmission. Insecticide Resistance Management was an enduring theme and countries are at various levels of deployment of the new tools which are available to address insecticide resistance both LLINs and IRS. The meeting is a platform for dialogue around how countries can move towards elimination. Countries reiterated the need for stratification to enhance targeting of interventions; entomological monitoring was also identified as key, and the role of the private sector and academia in ensuring that the right vector tools are available, was also emphasized.

General Information

Agenda (for work stream agendas, please visit the individual work stream pages)

List of Participants (to be updated)

List of Posters

Travel Preparation Booklet

Brief Update (before meeting)

Plenary Presentations

Day 1

Keziah Malm & Justin McBeath – Welcome to the VCWG-15

Matthew Boslego – Update from the RBM Partnership to End Malaria

Fred Binka – The Lancet Commission on Eradication: country perspectives on practical approaches on implementation for impact (a panel discussion)

Inputs from countries at the panel discussion:

Day 3

Jan Kolaczinski – Update on recent, ongoing and future GMP work on malaria entomology and vector control

Rajpal Yadav – Update on Global Vector Control Response

Birkinesh Ameneshewa – Feedback from the ANVR (2000 – to-date)

Leo Braack & Htin Kyaw Thu – APMEN

Prosper Chaki – PAMCA

Samira Al-Eryani – Strengthening Vector Surveillance and Control: EMRO capacity-building activities

Chadwick Sikaala – SADC Malaria Elimination Eight: Secretariat Feedback

Kunizo Mori – Mitsui Chemicals Agro

Susie Nasr – Global Fund Perspective on Vector Control – Next Funding Cycle

Updates from other RBM Working Groups

Monitoring and Evaluation Reference Group

Malaria in Pregnancy Working Group

Social Behaviour Change Communication Working Group

Case Management Working Group

Work Stream Presentations

For work stream presentations, please visit the individual work stream event pages:

The BBC Radio Forum programme ‘Man vs Mosquito’ broadcasted on 20 February 2020. The link and mp3 below leads to the full interview.

Mosquitos are a fast-adapting, elusive enemy which humans have been trying to combat for thousands of years. As vectors of dangerous diseases, these tiny insects have killed more people in human history than any other animal. So what impact has the mosquito had on our lives? How have humans tried to halt its spread? And who is winning the battle? Joining Bridget Kendall to discuss the history of man and the mosquito are Dr. Erica McAlister, Senior Curator of Diptera – Flies – at the Natural History Museum in London; Dr. Timothy Winegard, historian and author of The Mosquito: A Human History of our Deadliest Predator; and Dr. Clifford Mutero of the International Centre for Insect Physiology and Ecology (ICIPE) in Nairobi, Kenya, and author of Mosquito Hunter: Chronicles of an African Insect Scientist.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/w3csyp64

GMP Secretariat

Save-the-Date: MALARIA IN ASIA conference in October 2020

There is another conference event planned for Oct 2020. A conference entitled MALARIA IN ASIA is taking place from 22-23 Oct 2020. Prof Shamilah Hisam from Kuala Lumpur IMR will provide more information regarding the scope of the Conference in the near future. …watch this space.

Modified bednet increases mosquito mortality by 29%: recent findings…

Research published recently in Nature Microbiology details how simple additions to traditional bed net design can help reduce the lethality of malaria and increase the choice of insecticides used to target the mosquitoes that carry the deadly disease.

Researchers and engineers from the University of Warwick and the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM) collaborated on the bed nets, called Barrier Bednets, and showed the netting was highly effective against wild insecticide-resistant Anopheles gambiae mosquitoes in Burkina Faso. Access this Press at https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2019-12/uow-mdc112919.php and the full paper at https://www.nature.com/articles/s41564-019-0607-2.

WHO World Malaria Report 2019 now available

This message from WHO website: The World malaria report 2019 provides a comprehensive update on global and regional malaria data and trends. The report tracks investments in malaria programmes and research as well as progress across all intervention areas: prevention, diagnosis, treatment, elimination and surveillance. It also includes dedicated chapters on the consequences of malaria on maternal, infant and child health, the “High Burden to High Impact” approach as well as biological threats to the fight against malaria.
The 2019 report is based on information received from more than 80 countries and areas with ongoing malaria transmission. This information is supplemented by data from national household surveys and databases held by other organizations.
The Report can be accessed here (click on blue text and then click again on pop-up): https://www.who.int/publications-detail/world-malaria-report-2019

Latest WHO update on the status of new vector control tools in the development pipeline.

There are 10 different tools discussed and it a very useful and compact synopsis of the various approaches currently being tested for improved vector control or contact reduction. Go to the URL https://www.who.int/vector-control/vcag/new-interventions/en/

Below are some fairly recent publications we found interesting (and yes, we acknowledge this reflects personal bias, but it should nevertheless resonate with many vector biologists)

The importance of vector control for the control and elimination of vector-borne diseases

Wilson AL, Courtenay O, Kelly-Hope LA, Scott TW, Takken W, Torr SJ, et al. (2020)
PLoS Negl Trop Dis 14 (1), e0007831. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pntd.0007831

The authors chart the history of vector control through time from elucidation of the transmission route of VBDs to the present day. Pre-1940 vector control relied heavily on environmental management and larval control based on a thorough understanding of pathogen transmission but was replaced by insecticide-based vector control, often deployed as a monotherapy. The authors call for increased political will and investment in vector control and a return to locally tailored vector control that draws on the entire toolbox of interventions available.

A Roadmap for the Development of Ivermectin as a Complementary Malaria Vector Control Tool (please read, we need to start taking this seriously…)

In the context of stalling progress against malaria, resistance of mosquitoes to insecticides, and residual transmission, mass drug administration (MDA) of ivermectin, an endectocide used for neglected tropical diseases (NTDs), has emerged as a promising complementary vector control method. Ivermectin reduces the life span of Anopheles mosquitoes that feed on treated humans and/or livestock, potentially decreasing malaria parasite transmission when administered at the community level. Following the publication by WHO of the preferred product characteristics for endectocides as vector control tools, this roadmap provides a comprehensive view of processes needed to make ivermectin available as a vector control tool by 2024 with a completely novel mechanism of action. The roadmap covers various aspects, which include 1) the definition of optimal dosage/regimens for ivermectin MDA in both humans and livestock, 2) the risk of resistance to the drug and environmental impact, 3) ethical issues, 4) political and community engagement, 5) translation of evidence into policy, and 6) operational aspects of large-scale deployment of the drug, all in the context of a drug given as a prevention tool acting at the community level. The roadmap reflects the insights of a multidisciplinary group of global health experts who worked together to elucidate the path to inclusion of ivermectin in the toolbox against malaria, to address residual transmission, counteract insecticide resistance, and contribute to the end of this deadly disease.© The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene . Access the paper at https://www.ajtmh.org/content/journals/10.4269/ajtmh.19-0620

Characterizing residual malaria transmission in forested areas …..

Excellent article by Hannah Margaret Edwards, Vu Duc Chinh, Bui Le Duy, Pham Vinh Thanh, Ngo Duc Thang, Dao Minh Trang, Irwin Chavez & Jeffrey Hii. Characterizing residual malaria transmission in forested areas with low coverage of core vector control in central Viet Nam. Parasites & Vectors 12, Article number: 454 (2019) . See the pdf in the link https://parasitesandvectors.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13071-019-3695-1. Here is some background: “Despite great success in significantly reducing the malaria burden in Viet Nam over recent years, the ongoing presence of malaria vectors and Plasmodium infection in remote forest areas and among marginalised groups presents a challenge to reaching elimination and a threat to re-emergence of transmission. Often transmission persists in a population despite high reported coverage of long-lasting insecticidal nets (LLINs), the mainstay control method for malaria. To investigate what factors may contribute to this, a mixed-methods study was conducted in Son Thai commune, a community in south-central Viet Nam that has ongoing malaria cases despite universal LLIN coverage. A cross-sectional behavioural and net-coverage survey was conducted along with observations of net use and entomological collections in the village, farm huts and forest sites used by members of the community. “

Transmission risk beyond the village….

Then there is another interesting one by at least some of the same authors as above: Hannah Edwards et al. 2019 Malaria journal. Transmission risk beyond the village: entomological and human factors contributing to residual malaria transmission in an area approaching malaria elimination on the Thailand–Myanmar border.
https://malariajournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12936-019-2852-5 . The conclusions of this study were: “Entomological and epidemiological findings suggest drivers and modulators of sustained infection prevalence in the area to be: higher mosquito abundance in forested areas where LLINs were used less frequently or could not be used; late sleeping and waking times coinciding with peak biting hours; feeding preferences of Anopheles taking them away from contact with LLIN and indoor residual spraying (IRS), e.g. exophagy and zoophagy; non-use of LLIN and use of damaged/torn LLIN; high population movement across the border and into forested areas thereby increasing risk of exposure, decreasing use of protection and limiting access to healthcare; and, Plasmodium vivax predominance resulting in relapse(s) of previous infection. The findings highlight gaps in current intervention coverage beyond the village setting”.

Prospects and strategies for malaria elimination in the Greater Mekong Sub-region …

Also interesting is the one by Nils Kaehler et al. 2019. Malaria Journal. Prospects and strategies for malaria elimination in the Greater Mekong Sub-region: a qualitative study.
https://malariajournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12936-019-2835-6 . The conclusions of this study include: “Against a backdrop of increasing anti-malarial resistance and decreasing choices of anti-malarial regimens, policy makers and researchers stressed the urgency of finding new malaria elimination strategies. There was consensus that multi-pronged strategies and approaches are needed, that no single potential tool/strategy can be appropriate to all settings. Hence there is a need to customize malaria control and elimination strategies based on the better surveillance data”. This short Conclusions section does not do justice to the excellent content of the paper, highly interesting.

APMEN supporting malaria elimination objectives of member states: The 2nd International Malaria Vector Surveillance for Elimination course recently completed.

The APMEN VCWG partnered with Kasetsart University in Bangkok to present the 2nd International Malaria Surveillance for Elimination course between 29th September and 11th October. The course was held under the leadership of Professor Theeraphap Chareonviriyaphap, and focused on capacity building in Country Partner NMCP entomology staff as well as representatives of academic institutions across Asia Pacific. Main training themes included malaria vector diversity, identification, sampling methods and sample processing, but also a good number of topics relevant to malaria entomologists such as Work Plan development, GIS, mapping, Insectary techniques, and Insecticide Susceptibility testing. We were fortunate in getting the commitment of ten experts in these topics to fly in to present lectures and help with the practical work. Thank you to all these people for their support, time and goodwill! The course was attended by 30 participants from 20 countries in the Asia Pacific region, and were selected on a competitive basis. APMEN (by way of a grant from Sumitomo Chemical Company) covered the bulk of the costs of the course, with significant contributions from supporting institutions including Kasetsart University and ACT Malaria.

PMI is seeking malaria research partners: Please see below a message sent out by RBM VCWG

The President’s Malaria Initiative: Evaluation & Research-to-Use Implementation Project
Solicitation Number: GH-BAA-2018-Addendum 04
Agency: Agency for International Development
Office: Washington D.C.
Location: USAID/Washington

Synopsis: 
Through this BAA addendum, USAID seeks creation of a malaria evaluation and research partnership, via an organization or group of organizations, to conduct future program evaluation and research activities, establish consensus for new collaborative research ideas, synthesize and conduct meta-analysis of existing malaria data, and provide solutions to improve evaluation and research data utilization. Please see the following links for more details.

FedBizOpps – https://www.fbo.gov/spg/AID/OP/WashingtonDC/GH-BAA-2018-Addendum04/listing.html
Grants.gov – https://www.grants.gov/web/grants/view-opportunity.html?oppId=320960

VectorWorks Releases NetCALC Lite!K

The U.S. President’s Malaria Initiative VectorWorks Project is pleased to release NetCALC Lite (https://www.vector-works.org/resources/netcalc-planning-tool/). A simplified version of the original NetCALC tool, it is an insecticide-treated net (ITN) quantification tool designed to guide users toward an estimate of their ITN need by distribution channel. This new tool allows users to either input their desired distribution channels or to have NetCALC Lite recommend a channel mix based on a few questions concerning the context of the distribution environment. In as little as five minutes, users can have a printable report detailing ITN need to fulfill programmatic needs in the coming years.

For more information and to access the tool, visit: https://www.vector-works.org/resources/netcalc-planning-tool/

News


Free Online Course: The Global Challenge of Vector Borne Diseases and How to Control Them (Please go to the “Training” Page to see more on this…excellent opportunity)


National Plan of Action 2020-2024 VBDs in Pakistan

Kindly find below the link to the first-ever developed “National Plan of Action 2020-2024” for sustainable management of VBDs in Pakistan. It describes the vision and priorities for control of VBDs of public health importance in Pakistan. The development of this document is a momentous achievement of NMCP-Pakistan and its Provincial Malaria/VBDs Programs using their own expertise and knowledge, and can be a helpful tool for other countries facing issues with VBDs (malaria, dengue, chikungunya, leishmaniasis, Crimean Congo Haemorrhygic, Yellow Fever, Japanese Encephalitis, etc) to develop their own PoAs in their local context.

Please feel free to contact NMCP-Pakistan if you need any clarification or assistance (Mr Muhammad Mukhtar, mukhtarnih@gmail.com).

http://dmc.gov.pk/documents/pdfs/VBDs.pdf



TDR’s guidance document on multisectoral approaches published online

TDR’s guidance document on Multisectoral Approach to the Prevention and Control of Vector-Borne Diseases is published. You can find it here


https://www.who.int/tdr/publications/year/2020/mca-for-prevention-and-control-of-vbds/en/

If you have any questions, kindly contact directly Dr Florence Fouque (fouquef@who.int) or Dr Qingxia Zhong (zhongq@who.int).
Happy reading


Contribution Invitation – Insects, Special Issue – Innovative Holistic and Transdisciplinary Approaches to Control Vector-borne Diseases

Dr. Hans J. Overgaard from Norwegian University of Life Sciences is serving as the Guest Editor of the Special Issue entitled “Innovative Holistic and Transdisciplinary Approaches to Control Vector-borne Diseases” for the journal Insects (http://www.mdpi.com/journal/insects/). The website of this special issue can be found at https://www.mdpi.com/journal/insects/special_issues/vector-borne_control.

Submission Deadline: 31 May 2021. Please contact Dr. Overgaard if you are interested to contribute and for further information.

Kind regards,

Guest Editor

Dr. Hans J. Overgaard


Invitation Webinar training: What you should Know about LLINs| Thursday July 23rd 2020

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Save the date Thursday July 23rd 2020

Dear partner

Impact Santé Afrique (ISA) is pleased to invite you to his next webinar event with the collaboration of Vestergaard. 

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT LONG-LASTING

INSECTICIDAL NETS AND THEIR IMPACT

Are you familiar with the standard LLINs? PBO? New Generation? How to maintain LLINs? What is their impact?

All these questions will be answered during this webinar. It is free and open to Civil Society Organizations, Media, Parliamentarians, Private Sector, community members and all other stakeholders in the fight against malaria.

Date: Thursday July 23rd 2020

Time: 09:00-10:00 am UTC / Ghana time

          10:00-11:00 am Cameroon/Nigeria time

          11:00-12:00 am Zambia/Rwanda time

          12:00-13:00 am Tanzania time

*Please verify your country’s time

To register Click here

It’s free! But with limited spaces

Please check your spams after registration because zoom.us will send you reminders directly.


Click here to see a tutorial video for zoom.us meeting

For more information isa.academy@impactsante.org     http://impactsante.org/

Public comment on preferred product characteristics (PPCs) for malaria vector control interventions

The WHO Global Malaria Programme (GMP) is seeking public comment on preferred product characteristics (PPCs) for malaria vector control interventions. PPCs are becoming a key tool for WHO to incentivize and guide the development of urgently needed health products. 

More information here:

https://www.who.int/news-room/articles-detail/public-consultation-on-preferred-product-characteristics-for-malaria-vector-control-interventions


Survey COVID-19 impact on vector control

Global Vector Hub (https://globalvectorhub.lshtm.ac.uk/) is trying to assess how the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting vector control efforts and related activities globally.

Are you working in vector control, vector research, public health, policy or funding? How is the COVID-19 pandemic affecting your work? The Global Vector Hub would love to hear from you! Please click here to complete our short survey:

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSecg6E13CMvauhCcRgr0bBDooQQTRxkKyEYIC0PPKtToAOcbA/viewform?vc=0&c=0&w=1

If you have any questions, please contact directly Frederik Seelig frederik.seelig@lshtm.ac.uk


Entomological Surveillance Planning Tool (ESPT)

Hello colleagues, 
The final Entomological Surveillance Planning Tool (ESPT), an operational decision-support tool for national malaria programs to plan entomological surveillance activities, interpret entomological data, and guide and advance data-driven vector control decisions is shared in this message, together with the 2-page document summarizing the ESPT purpose and intended use. The ESPT was developed by the University of California, San Francisco’s Malaria Elimination Initiative and the University of Notre Dame (ND) with funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. An Entomological Surveillance Working Group (ESWG) of national, regional, and global experts guided the design and iteration of the tool, and an early draft of the ESPT was piloted with national malaria programs and partners in several countries across Mesoamerica, southern Africa, and the Greater Mekong Subregion throughout 2018/2019.
 
The ESPT will be available in Spanish, French, and Portuguese by the end of 2020.

The ESPT is a new addition to the MEI Malaria Elimination Toolkit .The MEI toolkit offers a suite of evidence-based, user-friendly tools to strengthen national and district-level malaria elimination programs. Please visit the ESPT webpage for an overview of the ESPT.
 
Training materials on the ESPT will also be available by the end of 2020. If you are interested in using or learning more about the ESPT, please contact the following individuals: Élodie Vajda (also French speaker) elodie.vajda@ucsf.edu, Allison Tatarsky allison.tatarsky@ucsf.edu, and Neil Lobo nlobo@nd.edu


The Global Vector Hub-Beta has now gone live!

The Global Vector Hub at LSHTM & ARCTEC decided to launch an early version of the GVH (‘GVH-Beta’) to address the critical need to continue to fight vector-borne diseases, share knowledge and provide information on how to protect communities, build capacity and manage health systems. This will be a pared-down version without the data and networking aspects of the full version, which will be launched subsequently. Instead, we will focus on resources on vector control to assist in capacity building, and by providing comprehensive information packs for different groups of users (public health officials; vector control agents; researchers, general public) and diseases (malaria, Aedes-borne viral diseases, Chagas disease and Leishmaniases).

The Global Vector Hub-Beta has now gone live! Please see the new website here:

https://globalvectorhub.lshtm.ac.uk/

If you have questions, please direct them to Frederik Seelig, Frederik.Seelig@lshtm.ac.uk


The Effects of layering IRS with LLINs –An Interview of Experts: June 25th 9Am-Please join!

As resistance to pyrethroid insecticides continues to spread and decisions about how to deploy specific interventions are becoming increasingly complex, questions remain about the best methods for layering new tools to maximize program impact. Join the discussion on June 25th at 9AM EDT via Zoom (details below) as we interview experts on the effects of layering IRS and LLINs from the Unitaid-funded NgenIRS Project.

Our experts:

  • Sergi Alonso, PhD, ISGlobal in conversation with Rose Zulliger, PhD, US President’s Malaria Initiative/Center for Disease Control, Division of Parasitic Diseases and Malaria
    Discussion topic
    : Evidence from a cluster-randomized control trial in Mopeia, Mozambique on the direct and indirect costs of IRS with non-pyrethroid insecticide in a high burden area of Mozambique with high coverage of LLINs.
  • Ellie Sherrard-Smith, PhD, Imperial College in conversation with Helen Jamet, PhD, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
    Discussion topic
    : Using models to make product layering decisions.
  • Joshua Yukich, PhD, Tulane University in conversation with Alexandra Cameron, PhD, Unitaid
    Discussion topic
    : Meta-analysis of the cost and cost-effectiveness of 3GIRS products in Ghana, Mali, Mozambique, and Uganda in areas with access to LLINs.  

Please register at the link below and submit any questions you have for the experts in advance. Looking forward to seeing you!

Register here: https://path.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_NuoQBRZQSfSh2FhDpDUZIQ  

Sincerely,

Molly Robertson

Senior Evidence Lead, NgenIRS


APMEN TechTalks – ‘Forest-goers and residual malaria’ – Webinar on June 9, 4:00pm Singapore time

The next ‘APMEN TechTalks’ webinar, hosted by the APMEN Vector Control Working Group is scheduled on June 9, 4:00 pm Singapore time.

You can register here: https://tinyurl.com/apmenwebinar3

Kindly send your webinar-related questions to Dr. Leo Braack: l.braack@malariaconsortium.org

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COVID-19 and malaria related documents

There is a lot of justified concern regarding the potential impact of COVID-19 on malaria service delivery and how to continue Control activities despite the need for safety, so Konstantina Boutsika at RBM VCWG has kindly made us aware of a list of COVID-19 and malaria related documents on the RBM webpage
https://endmalaria.org/resources/library/covid19/4481


New publication: The durability of long-lasting insecticidal nets distributed to the households between 2009 and 2013 in Nepal

By Prakash Ghimire, Komal Raj Rijal, Nabaraj Adhikari, Garib Das Thakur, Baburam Marasini, Upendra Thapa Shrestha, Megha Raj Banjara, Shishir Kumar Pant, Bipin Adhikari, Shyam Prakash Dumre, Nihal Singh, Olivier Pigeon, Theeraphap Chareonviriyaphap, Irwin Chavez, Leonard Ortega and Jeffrey Hii. The main objective of this study was to assess the durability through assessment of community usage, physical integrity, residual bio-efficacy, and chemical retention in LLINs: Interceptor®, Yorkool®,
and PermaNet ®2.0 which were used in Nepal during 2009 through 2013. Find it at https://tropmedhealth.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s41182-020-00223-w


New article Solomon Islands residual malaria underlying causes

There is a great new paper just out describing human behaviour predisposing towards malaria transmission by An farauti which is an early evening biter. Worth having a look at. Find it here: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-020-63994-6. The paper title and details: Pollard, Maclaren, Russel, Burkot. Protecting the peri-domestic environment: the challenge for eliminating residual malaria. 2020. Scientific Reports 10. Article 7018.


New Webinar on the Vector LearningXchange —- How Geospatial Data Improves Planning and Implementation in Vector Control

Webinar! Mapping 101 with Maxar: How Geospatial Data Improves Planning and Implementation in Vector Control

Presenters: Matt Hallas, Maxar and Solomon Wasse, PMI VectorLink Ethiopia

When: Thursday, May 14th 10:00 AM EST

This webinar will focus on the application of geospatial data for the purposes of improving the planning and implementation of health interventions. Satellite imagery and data derived from high-resolution imagery can be used to accurately map the distribution of populations, which is particularly beneficial in regions that have historically been unmapped. After quickly covering the basics of extracting information from satellite imagery, such as the extent of buildings and roads, we will transition into several use cases that highlight the utility of high-resolution data. Using a geospatial dataset detailing all of the buildings in a country, our partners have achieved significant reductions in their operational costs due to time and resource savings. We will walk through 2 distinct use cases where this data provided immediate value: 1) Planning and implementing an IRS campaign in Mozambique and, 2) a use case example from PMI VectorLink Ethiopia using satellite imagery for enumeration activities.

https://www.vectorlearningxchange.com/event/webinar-mapping-101-with-maxar-how-geospatial-data-improves-planning-and-implementation-in-vector-control/


NgenIRS Evidence Launched! // Project Overview, Evidence Slides and Video – Preview

News alert from RBM VCWG:

On December 31st, 2019, the Unitaid funded NgenIRS project came to an end. The NgenIRS team, led by IVCC and made up of colleagues from PATH and Abt Associates, worked in partnership with 16 malaria control and elimination programmes across Africa, the US President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI), the Global Fund and three insecticide manufacturers. The downward trend in IRS use was reversed and the resulting expansion of use has resulted in significant public health impact, savings in commodity costs and new evidence showing the cost-effectiveness of third generation IRS (3GIRS). IVCC have launched a collection of evidence materials, consisting of a video, a project overview and evidence slides (available in both English and French). These materials are available for free download on the IVCC website. These materials have been prepared to show the impact of the NgenIRS project and are intended for use by partners and stakeholders who need to communicate the contribution of 3GIRS products to the reduction of malaria.
https://www.ivcc.com/market-access/ngenirs/
https://www.ivcc.com/resource-library/#ngenirs

Malaria ‘completely stopped’ by microbe

Scientists have found a microsporidian present in about 5% of wild mosquitoes in east Africa that completely blocks infection of the mosquito by Plasmodium. It can be sexually transmitted between mosquitoes. Work is continuing to understand the dynamics of the infection. I read the article and for the first time in a long while thought that maybe this is indeed something that could make a difference in malaria control. Read more on this at https://www.bbc.com/news/health-52530828

Unique Namibian trial finds smart interventions reduce malaria transmission by 75%

This article outlined below refers to work done in Namibia (Africa) but it is just as relevant for Asia-Pacific. The scientific study (published in The Lancet) has findings which, if applied in core residual malaria settings, would greatly assist NMCP’s in malaria elimination objectives. Read it, is is worth it!

The malaria trial conducted in northern Namibia demonstrates how malaria incidence can be reduced by up to 75% in settings where malaria transmission is mostly low but persistent, and plagued by sporadic outbreaks of higher numbers of malaria cases.

In this study, researchers conducted a trial to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of two interventions: (i) reactive focal mass drug administration (rfMDA) and (ii) reactive focal vector control (RAVC), and their combination.

This trial is unique because it is the first randomized controlled trial of rfMDA and/or RAVC. Study communities were randomly assigned to receive either rfMDA, or RAVC, or the combination, or neither of these two interventions (the latter being the control group).

“We found that reactive focal mass drug administration and reactive focal vector control, when implemented alone and in combination, significantly reduced malaria transmission among targeted populations in the Zambezi region of Namibia,” says Koekemoer. “Furthermore, the two interventions, when used in combination, had an additive effect – reducing rates of new malaria cases by 75%”.

You can find a shortened version of the full paper at https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2020-04/uotw-unt042520.php

New Review article out on P vivax (and P falciparum) epidemiology

Thought you may be interested in having a look at this article, now out in “Trends in Parasitology”…
Plasmodium vivax in the Era of the Shrinking P. falciparum Map
Ric N. Price, Robert J. Commons, Katherine E. Battle, Kamala Thriemer, Kamini Mendis

Tailoring malaria interventions in the COVID-19 response

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the malaria community must remain committed to supporting the prevention of malaria infection, illness and death through preventive and case management services, while maintaining a safe environment for patients, clients and staff. Deaths due to malaria and its comorbidities (anaemia, undernutrition, etc.) must continue to be prevented.
The attached document provides overarching principles as well as specific technical guidance for malaria interventions, including prevention of infection and disease, care and treatment of cases, testing, clinical services, supply chain and laboratory activities, during this time of the evolving COVID-19 pandemic. This document will be updated as the situation changes.
Also the link is here: https://www.who.int/malaria/publications/atoz/tailoring-malaria-interventions-in-the-covid-19-response/en/

IT STARTS WITH YOU!!!

The theme of World Malaria Day 2020 — Zero Malaria Starts with Me — is a movement dedicated to driving action and making change, and this starts with YOU! Get your leaders to take action using the resources available at zeromalaria.africaSTART NOW

Feedback on 15th Annual Meeting of RBM VCWG
Geneva, Switzerland, 3 – 5 February 2020

The 2020 Vector Control Working Group annual meeting had the largest participation to date!

The RBM VCWG 15th annual meeting was another exciting gathering of over 310 participants from over 54 countries with broad representation from endemic countries, research and academia, operational control programs and private sector. The meeting continued to be an effective forum for best practice sharing and hearing about the challenges experienced in countries in the implementation of effective vector control. It was also an opportunity to learn about new tools and access programs (NgenIRS and New Nets Project) which are being deployed in operational or research phases.  The meeting presentations included both the existing core interventions as well as new methods to address residual transmission. Insecticide Resistance Management was an enduring theme and countries are at various levels of deployment of the new tools which are available to address insecticide resistance both LLINs and IRS. The meeting is a platform for dialogue around how countries can move towards elimination. Countries reiterated the need for stratification to enhance targeting of interventions; entomological monitoring was also identified as key, and the role of the private sector and academia in ensuring that the right vector tools are available, was also emphasized.

General Information

Agenda (for work stream agendas, please visit the individual work stream pages)

List of Participants (to be updated)

List of Posters

Travel Preparation Booklet

Brief Update (before meeting)

Plenary Presentations

Day 1

Keziah Malm & Justin McBeath – Welcome to the VCWG-15

Matthew Boslego – Update from the RBM Partnership to End Malaria

Fred Binka – The Lancet Commission on Eradication: country perspectives on practical approaches on implementation for impact (a panel discussion)

Inputs from countries at the panel discussion:

Day 3

Jan Kolaczinski – Update on recent, ongoing and future GMP work on malaria entomology and vector control

Rajpal Yadav – Update on Global Vector Control Response

Birkinesh Ameneshewa – Feedback from the ANVR (2000 – to-date)

Leo Braack & Htin Kyaw Thu – APMEN

Prosper Chaki – PAMCA

Samira Al-Eryani – Strengthening Vector Surveillance and Control: EMRO capacity-building activities

Chadwick Sikaala – SADC Malaria Elimination Eight: Secretariat Feedback

Kunizo Mori – Mitsui Chemicals Agro

Susie Nasr – Global Fund Perspective on Vector Control – Next Funding Cycle

Updates from other RBM Working Groups

Monitoring and Evaluation Reference Group

Malaria in Pregnancy Working Group

Social Behaviour Change Communication Working Group

Case Management Working Group

Work Stream Presentations

For work stream presentations, please visit the individual work stream event pages:

The BBC Radio Forum programme ‘Man vs Mosquito’ broadcasted on 20 February 2020. The link and mp3 below leads to the full interview.

Mosquitos are a fast-adapting, elusive enemy which humans have been trying to combat for thousands of years. As vectors of dangerous diseases, these tiny insects have killed more people in human history than any other animal. So what impact has the mosquito had on our lives? How have humans tried to halt its spread? And who is winning the battle? Joining Bridget Kendall to discuss the history of man and the mosquito are Dr. Erica McAlister, Senior Curator of Diptera – Flies – at the Natural History Museum in London; Dr. Timothy Winegard, historian and author of The Mosquito: A Human History of our Deadliest Predator; and Dr. Clifford Mutero of the International Centre for Insect Physiology and Ecology (ICIPE) in Nairobi, Kenya, and author of Mosquito Hunter: Chronicles of an African Insect Scientist.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/w3csyp64

GMP Secretariat

Save-the-Date: MALARIA IN ASIA conference in October 2020

There is another conference event planned for Oct 2020. A conference entitled MALARIA IN ASIA is taking place from 22-23 Oct 2020. Prof Shamilah Hisam from Kuala Lumpur IMR will provide more information regarding the scope of the Conference in the near future. …watch this space.

Modified bednet increases mosquito mortality by 29%: recent findings…

Research published recently in Nature Microbiology details how simple additions to traditional bed net design can help reduce the lethality of malaria and increase the choice of insecticides used to target the mosquitoes that carry the deadly disease.

Researchers and engineers from the University of Warwick and the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM) collaborated on the bed nets, called Barrier Bednets, and showed the netting was highly effective against wild insecticide-resistant Anopheles gambiae mosquitoes in Burkina Faso. Access this Press at https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2019-12/uow-mdc112919.php and the full paper at https://www.nature.com/articles/s41564-019-0607-2.

WHO World Malaria Report 2019 now available

This message from WHO website: The World malaria report 2019 provides a comprehensive update on global and regional malaria data and trends. The report tracks investments in malaria programmes and research as well as progress across all intervention areas: prevention, diagnosis, treatment, elimination and surveillance. It also includes dedicated chapters on the consequences of malaria on maternal, infant and child health, the “High Burden to High Impact” approach as well as biological threats to the fight against malaria.
The 2019 report is based on information received from more than 80 countries and areas with ongoing malaria transmission. This information is supplemented by data from national household surveys and databases held by other organizations.
The Report can be accessed here (click on blue text and then click again on pop-up): https://www.who.int/publications-detail/world-malaria-report-2019

Latest WHO update on the status of new vector control tools in the development pipeline.

There are 10 different tools discussed and it a very useful and compact synopsis of the various approaches currently being tested for improved vector control or contact reduction. Go to the URL https://www.who.int/vector-control/vcag/new-interventions/en/

Below are some fairly recent publications we found interesting (and yes, we acknowledge this reflects personal bias, but it should nevertheless resonate with many vector biologists)

The importance of vector control for the control and elimination of vector-borne diseases

Wilson AL, Courtenay O, Kelly-Hope LA, Scott TW, Takken W, Torr SJ, et al. (2020)
PLoS Negl Trop Dis 14 (1), e0007831. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pntd.0007831

The authors chart the history of vector control through time from elucidation of the transmission route of VBDs to the present day. Pre-1940 vector control relied heavily on environmental management and larval control based on a thorough understanding of pathogen transmission but was replaced by insecticide-based vector control, often deployed as a monotherapy. The authors call for increased political will and investment in vector control and a return to locally tailored vector control that draws on the entire toolbox of interventions available.

A Roadmap for the Development of Ivermectin as a Complementary Malaria Vector Control Tool (please read, we need to start taking this seriously…)

In the context of stalling progress against malaria, resistance of mosquitoes to insecticides, and residual transmission, mass drug administration (MDA) of ivermectin, an endectocide used for neglected tropical diseases (NTDs), has emerged as a promising complementary vector control method. Ivermectin reduces the life span of Anopheles mosquitoes that feed on treated humans and/or livestock, potentially decreasing malaria parasite transmission when administered at the community level. Following the publication by WHO of the preferred product characteristics for endectocides as vector control tools, this roadmap provides a comprehensive view of processes needed to make ivermectin available as a vector control tool by 2024 with a completely novel mechanism of action. The roadmap covers various aspects, which include 1) the definition of optimal dosage/regimens for ivermectin MDA in both humans and livestock, 2) the risk of resistance to the drug and environmental impact, 3) ethical issues, 4) political and community engagement, 5) translation of evidence into policy, and 6) operational aspects of large-scale deployment of the drug, all in the context of a drug given as a prevention tool acting at the community level. The roadmap reflects the insights of a multidisciplinary group of global health experts who worked together to elucidate the path to inclusion of ivermectin in the toolbox against malaria, to address residual transmission, counteract insecticide resistance, and contribute to the end of this deadly disease.© The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene . Access the paper at https://www.ajtmh.org/content/journals/10.4269/ajtmh.19-0620

Characterizing residual malaria transmission in forested areas …..

Excellent article by Hannah Margaret Edwards, Vu Duc Chinh, Bui Le Duy, Pham Vinh Thanh, Ngo Duc Thang, Dao Minh Trang, Irwin Chavez & Jeffrey Hii. Characterizing residual malaria transmission in forested areas with low coverage of core vector control in central Viet Nam. Parasites & Vectors 12, Article number: 454 (2019) . See the pdf in the link https://parasitesandvectors.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13071-019-3695-1. Here is some background: “Despite great success in significantly reducing the malaria burden in Viet Nam over recent years, the ongoing presence of malaria vectors and Plasmodium infection in remote forest areas and among marginalised groups presents a challenge to reaching elimination and a threat to re-emergence of transmission. Often transmission persists in a population despite high reported coverage of long-lasting insecticidal nets (LLINs), the mainstay control method for malaria. To investigate what factors may contribute to this, a mixed-methods study was conducted in Son Thai commune, a community in south-central Viet Nam that has ongoing malaria cases despite universal LLIN coverage. A cross-sectional behavioural and net-coverage survey was conducted along with observations of net use and entomological collections in the village, farm huts and forest sites used by members of the community. “

Transmission risk beyond the village….

Then there is another interesting one by at least some of the same authors as above: Hannah Edwards et al. 2019 Malaria journal. Transmission risk beyond the village: entomological and human factors contributing to residual malaria transmission in an area approaching malaria elimination on the Thailand–Myanmar border.
https://malariajournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12936-019-2852-5 . The conclusions of this study were: “Entomological and epidemiological findings suggest drivers and modulators of sustained infection prevalence in the area to be: higher mosquito abundance in forested areas where LLINs were used less frequently or could not be used; late sleeping and waking times coinciding with peak biting hours; feeding preferences of Anopheles taking them away from contact with LLIN and indoor residual spraying (IRS), e.g. exophagy and zoophagy; non-use of LLIN and use of damaged/torn LLIN; high population movement across the border and into forested areas thereby increasing risk of exposure, decreasing use of protection and limiting access to healthcare; and, Plasmodium vivax predominance resulting in relapse(s) of previous infection. The findings highlight gaps in current intervention coverage beyond the village setting”.

Prospects and strategies for malaria elimination in the Greater Mekong Sub-region …

Also interesting is the one by Nils Kaehler et al. 2019. Malaria Journal. Prospects and strategies for malaria elimination in the Greater Mekong Sub-region: a qualitative study.
https://malariajournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12936-019-2835-6 . The conclusions of this study include: “Against a backdrop of increasing anti-malarial resistance and decreasing choices of anti-malarial regimens, policy makers and researchers stressed the urgency of finding new malaria elimination strategies. There was consensus that multi-pronged strategies and approaches are needed, that no single potential tool/strategy can be appropriate to all settings. Hence there is a need to customize malaria control and elimination strategies based on the better surveillance data”. This short Conclusions section does not do justice to the excellent content of the paper, highly interesting.

APMEN supporting malaria elimination objectives of member states: The 2nd International Malaria Vector Surveillance for Elimination course recently completed.

The APMEN VCWG partnered with Kasetsart University in Bangkok to present the 2nd International Malaria Surveillance for Elimination course between 29th September and 11th October. The course was held under the leadership of Professor Theeraphap Chareonviriyaphap, and focused on capacity building in Country Partner NMCP entomology staff as well as representatives of academic institutions across Asia Pacific. Main training themes included malaria vector diversity, identification, sampling methods and sample processing, but also a good number of topics relevant to malaria entomologists such as Work Plan development, GIS, mapping, Insectary techniques, and Insecticide Susceptibility testing. We were fortunate in getting the commitment of ten experts in these topics to fly in to present lectures and help with the practical work. Thank you to all these people for their support, time and goodwill! The course was attended by 30 participants from 20 countries in the Asia Pacific region, and were selected on a competitive basis. APMEN (by way of a grant from Sumitomo Chemical Company) covered the bulk of the costs of the course, with significant contributions from supporting institutions including Kasetsart University and ACT Malaria.

PMI is seeking malaria research partners: Please see below a message sent out by RBM VCWG

The President’s Malaria Initiative: Evaluation & Research-to-Use Implementation Project
Solicitation Number: GH-BAA-2018-Addendum 04
Agency: Agency for International Development
Office: Washington D.C.
Location: USAID/Washington

Synopsis: 
Through this BAA addendum, USAID seeks creation of a malaria evaluation and research partnership, via an organization or group of organizations, to conduct future program evaluation and research activities, establish consensus for new collaborative research ideas, synthesize and conduct meta-analysis of existing malaria data, and provide solutions to improve evaluation and research data utilization. Please see the following links for more details.

FedBizOpps – https://www.fbo.gov/spg/AID/OP/WashingtonDC/GH-BAA-2018-Addendum04/listing.html
Grants.gov – https://www.grants.gov/web/grants/view-opportunity.html?oppId=320960

VectorWorks Releases NetCALC Lite!K

The U.S. President’s Malaria Initiative VectorWorks Project is pleased to release NetCALC Lite (https://www.vector-works.org/resources/netcalc-planning-tool/). A simplified version of the original NetCALC tool, it is an insecticide-treated net (ITN) quantification tool designed to guide users toward an estimate of their ITN need by distribution channel. This new tool allows users to either input their desired distribution channels or to have NetCALC Lite recommend a channel mix based on a few questions concerning the context of the distribution environment. In as little as five minutes, users can have a printable report detailing ITN need to fulfill programmatic needs in the coming years.

For more information and to access the tool, visit: https://www.vector-works.org/resources/netcalc-planning-tool/

HIGHLIGHTS

OTHER NEWS

20 Sep 2020

Invitation: 75th UNGA Dengue Side Event (online)

Please join us for an online dengue side event to mark the 75th United Nations General Assembly Register for the UNGA Dengue Side Event On the occasion of the 75th UN General Assembly, and to tie in with this year’s theme: “The Future We Want, the UN We Need: Reaffirming our Collective Commitment to Multilateralism”​the International Society for Neglected Tropical Diseases would like to invite you to join a wide range of partners for an online side event and discussions, against the backdrop of the COVID19 pandemic, looking at the global threat of dengue…

15 Sep 2020

A new free online course on controlling vector borne diseases is now open for enrolment!

London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine has launched a brand new MOOC (Massive Open-Access Online Course) on controlling vector borne diseases, in partnership with the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine and IVCC. Learners can sign up for free to explore the wide range of vectors and the diseases they transmit and learn about traditional and modern vector control. The MOOC is currently open for enrolment. Launching on 21st September, anyone can sign up for free here:  https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/vector-borne-diseases

14 Sep 2020

New Massive Open Online Course, free

Dear Vector Control Colleagues, Together with collaborators at IVCC, LSTM and LSHTM, ARCTEC have created a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) entitled‘The Global Challenge of Vector Borne Diseases and How to Control Them’, which is open for enrolment here:https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/vector-borne-diseases

14 Sep 2020

A new free online course on controlling vector borne diseases is now open for enrolment!

London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine has launched a brand new MOOC (Massive Open-Access Online Course) on controlling vector borne diseases, in partnership with the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine and IVCC. Learners can sign up for free to explore the wide range of vectors and the diseases they transmit and learn about traditional and modern vector control. The MOOC is currently open for enrolment. Launching on 21st September, anyone can sign up for free here:  https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/vector-borne-diseases

31 Aug 2020

Some recent publications by Asia Pacific vector colleagues… We have received notice of a batch of publications that have emerged over the past year from a group of Asia Pacific vector control entomologists, and would like to share the titles in case you have not picked up on them from Journal Content searches…see below. Apologies if we appear to be selective, we just happened to receive notification of these particular ones from a reader. Happy reading! 1.     Sukkanon C, Bangs MJ, Nararak J, Hii J, Chareonviriyaphap T (2020). Discriminating lethal concentrations…

16 Feb 2020

New Identification Key to AfroTropical Anopheles

To those interested in African Anopheles and identification keys, Maureen Coetzee has just published her update on the previous Gillies & Coetzee 1987 keys, and represents a complete overhaul including keys to new species, as well as Anopheles stephensi. You can find it in Malaria Journal at Coetzee, M. 2020. Malaria Journal 19:70.

10 Mar 2019

Entomology: a missing link for Asia Pacific…

Vector control remains an effective and critical measure to prevent malaria transmission in Asia Pacific countries. However, programmatic and technical capacity in entomology and vector control represents a key gap in the necessary repertoire of elimination tools. In the Asia Pacific region, All 5 Plasmodium species are present, along with a large number of vector species (see Figure 1). Transmission settings range from forested areas along