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A New Test of a Theory about Old Mosquitoes

Smith, David L.; Musiime, Alex K.; Maxwell, Kilama; Lindsay, Steven W.; Kiware, Samson

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David L. Smith

Alex K. Musiime

Kilama Maxwell

Samson Kiware


In vector control, it is widely accepted that killing adult mosquitoes would sharply reduce the proportion of old mosquitoes and cause the greatest changes to malaria transmission. The principle is based on a mathematical model of the sporozoite rate (the proportion of infective mosquitoes) that emphasized changes in mosquito age. Killing adult mosquitoes also reduces mosquito population densities, which are directly proportional to human biting rates (the number of bites, per person, per day). Eect sizes of vector control can be compared using sporozoite rates and human biting rates, which are commonly measured. We argue that human biting rates convey more use- ful information for planning, monitoring and evaluating vector control, and operational research should focus on understanding mosquito ecology.


Smith, D. L., Musiime, A. K., Maxwell, K., Lindsay, S. W., & Kiware, S. (2021). A New Test of a Theory about Old Mosquitoes. Trends in Parasitology, 37(3), 185-194.

Journal Article Type Article
Online Publication Date Nov 26, 2020
Publication Date Mar 1, 2021
Deposit Date Mar 24, 2021
Publicly Available Date Mar 25, 2021
Journal Trends in Parasitology
Print ISSN 1471-4922
Publisher Cell Press
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 37
Issue 3
Pages 185-194


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