Given the breadth of vector control-related literature, we are unable to include all relevant work. These updates are intended to focus primarily on Anopheles biology and a subset of control topics with global relevance. Any views expressed in the updates do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of IVCC. In many cases, we directly quote sections of published work. Mention of trade names or commercial products is solely for the purpose of providing specific information and does not imply recommendation or endorsement by IVCC or its funders.Tech Update Spring 2023 11th May 2023
Download the Tech Updates highlighting vector biology and control news, publications and resources.
Given the breadth of vector control-related literature, we are unable to include all relevant work. These updates are intended to focus primarily on Anopheles biology and a subset of control topics with global relevance. Any views expressed in the updates do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of IVCC. In many cases, we directly quote sections of published work. Mention of trade names or commercial products is solely for the purpose of providing specific information and does not imply recommendation or endorsement by IVCC or its funders.New entomological facility opened by Papua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research (PNGIMR) 14th April 2023
On 28th March, Papua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research (PNGIMR) officially opened the Belna Natnat Haus, a new entomological facility in Madang province on the north coast of the country.
Named after its location in Belna and the tok pisin word ‘natnat’ for mosquito, the construction of the laboratory was a key part of a partnership between IVCC, PNGIMR, National Department of Health (NDoH), Madang Provincial Health Authority, Burnet Institute, James Cook University (JCU) and Rotarians Against Malaria (RAM).
The NATNAT programme (Newly Adapted Tools Network Against vector-borne disease Transmission) has been funded by IVCC since 2019 through funds from Australia’s Department for Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).
NATNAT is led by PNGIMR, Burnet Institute and James Cook University to build the capacity in Papua New Guinea (PNG) for the rapid evaluation and adoption of new vector control tools and comprises capacity building both of facilities and skills, a range of laboratory, semi-field and field evaluations of new tools and liaison with stakeholders on the scale up of those tools shown to be effective.
The newly developed site consists of a laboratory, insectary, and a semi-field tunnel system with an experimental hut system to be completed later in 2023.
The laboratory has been operational since 2022, with staff and fixtures moving over from the old PNGIMR site in Yagaum, but the official opening was held this week and welcomed delegates from PNG NDoH, DFAT, RAM, IVCC, the local community and a range of other national stakeholders.
The Belna Natnat Haus will be an important part of the fight against vector-borne disease in a country where malaria rates are increasing and where the most commonly deployed tool (LLINs) are not sufficient on their own to combat local vector species with early, outdoor biting behaviours.
It is hoped the facility will also have a regional impact beyond PNG and plans are already underway on future development work to maximise the capability and impact of the site.
Dr Moses Laman, deputy director of the institute and project Principal Investigator said, “This facility provides a great opportunity for PNG and the Pacific region to be able to generate data that will enable NMCPs to make informed decisions, build capacity and create a conducive research environment now and into the future.”
Team in front of experimental tunnel system. Paul Daly (Burnet Institute), Leanne Robinson (Burnet Institute), Moses Laman (PNGIMR), Stephan Karl (PNGIMR/James Cook University), Rachel Farquahr (Burnet Institute).
Credit: Fred Yeomans (IVCC)
Featured image: Moses Laman, PNGIMR
Credit: Evelien Rosens (Burnet Institute)MMV and IVCC make 240 compounds available to stimulate research into new drugs and insecticides 22nd August 2022
On World Mosquito Day (Saturday 20th August), MMV and the Innovative Vector Control Consortium (IVCC) launched the Global Health Priority Box to provide scientists with free access to a collection of compounds with confirmed activity against infectious and mosquito-borne diseases, and vectors of global concern.
Download the press release to read the full story.Indoor Residual Spray (IRS) Community Trial begins in Papua New Guinea 15th November 2021
Last week, indoor residual spraying began in Papua New Guinea (PNG) as part of a 12-month epidemiological field trial under the NATNAT project led by PNG Institute of Medical Research, PNG National Malaria Control Programme, Burnet Institute, James Cook University and Rotarians Against Malaria (RAM).
The trial is running in 4 villages- Wasab, Bulal, Megiar and Mirap- in the north coast province of Madang, and will assess the effectiveness, feasibility, community acceptability and cost-effectiveness of residual spraying of household structures. The study is designed as an interrupted time series with two interventions over the time period and two control villages.
The trial is part of NATNAT’s wider programme of activity in PNG which aims to develop an evidence-based framework for the rapid assessment and adoption of novel vector control tools (VCTs) and has 4 main objectives:
- Strengthen laboratory, semi-field and field capacity to test new VCTs
- Conduct rigorous field evaluations of new VCTs and implementation (IRS, larval source management and spatial emanators)
- Investigate the community and health system acceptability and cost-effectiveness of new VCTs
- Support a national malaria control programme (NMCP)-led formal network for vector control tools and interventions in PNG
Malaria rates are increasing in PNG and elsewhere in Melanesia. LLINs are necessary but will not be sufficient on their own to reverse this trend and move towards elimination. Recent studies have also shown a decline in the effectiveness of LLINs in PNG and -in some areas- low net usage two years after mass distribution. Coupled with the challenge of early, outdoor- biting mosquitoes, new tools and improved usage are needed to fill these gaps.
NATNAT is part of IVCC’s Indo-Pacific Initiative (IPI) which is building on experience of vector control innovation in sub-Saharan African to identify and scale-up use of new and existing tools to support malaria control and elimination in the Indo-Pacific. IVCC is facilitating direct dialogue between its Africa-based staff and the NATNAT team to provide lessons learned and best practice with implementation planning and training of spray operators, based on years of field experience.
IPI also complements IVCC’s focus on Africa through contributing to evidence on the performance of outdoor tools for use in last-mile elimination scenarios, as well as expanding the markets for other novel products such as 3rd generation IRS.
NATNAT is one of three projects IVCC is leading in the Indo-Pacific region, funded by Australia Aid as part of its Global Health Security Initiative. The other two projects are Project BITE and a mathematical modelling project to predict the impact of new tools in the region.
Considering the significant challenges caused by COVID-19, IVCC commends its NATNAT partners for achieving this milestone on the road towards a possible reintroduction of national IRS spraying in PNG.