Controlling mosquitoes with semiochemicals : a review

23 Dec 2020

The use of semiochemicals in odour-based traps for surveillance and control of vector mosquitoes is deemed a new and viable component for integrated vector management programmes. Over 114 semiochemicals have been identifed, yet implementation of these for management of infectious diseases such as malaria, dengue, chikungunya and Rift Valley fever is still a major challenge. The difculties arise due to variation in how diferent mosquito species respond to not only single chemical compounds but also complex chemical blends. Additionally, mosquitoes respond to diferent volatile blends when they are looking for a mating partner, oviposition sites or a meal. Analytically the challenge lies not only in correctly identifying these semiochemical signals and cues but also in developing formulations that efectively mimic blend ratios that diferent mosquito species respond to. Only then can the formulations be used to enhance the selectivity and efcacy of odour-based traps. Understanding how mosquitoes use semiochemical cues and signals to survive may be key to unravelling these complex interactions. An overview of the current studies of these chemical messages and the chemical ecology involved in complex behavioural patterns is given. This includes an updated list of the semiochemicals which can be used for integrated vector control management programmes. A thorough understanding of these semiochemical cues is of importance for the development of new vector control methods that can be integrated into established control strategies.