GAMMA-IRRADIATION REDUCES SURVIVORSHIP, FEEDING BEHAVIOR, and OVIPOSITION of FEMALE AEDES AEGYPTI
Aedes aegypti is a prominent disease vector that is difficult to control through traditional integrated vector management due to its cryptic peridomestic immature-stage habitat and adult resting behavior, increasing resistance to pesticide formulations approved by the US Environmental Protection Agency, escalating deregistration of approved pesticides, and slow development of new effective chemical control measures. One novel method to control Ae. aegypti is the sterile insect technique (SIT) that leverages the mass release of irradiated (sterilized) males to overwhelm mate choice of natural populations of females. However, one potential liability of SIT is sex sorting errors prior to irradiation, resulting in accidental release of females. Our goal in this study was to test the extent to which irradiation affects female life-history parameters to assess the potential impacts of releasing irradiated females accidentally sorted with males. In this study, we determined that a radiation dose ≥30 Gy—a dose sufficient to sterilize males while preserving their mating competitiveness—may substantially impact longevity, bloodfeeding, oviposition, and egg hatch rate of female Ae. aegypti after being irradiated as pupae. These findings could reduce public concern for accidental release of females alongside irradiated males in an operational Ae. aegypti SIT control program.
Journal of the American Mosquito Control Association
Aldridge, R., Kline, J., Coburn, J., Britch, S., Boardman, L., Hahn, D., Chen, C., & Linthicum, K. (2021). GAMMA-IRRADIATION REDUCES SURVIVORSHIP, FEEDING BEHAVIOR, and OVIPOSITION of FEMALE AEDES AEGYPTI. Journal of the American Mosquito Control Association, 36 (3), 152-160. https://doi.org/10.2987/20-6957.1