Indan Journal of Medical Research Indan Journal of Medical Research Indan Journal of Medical Research Indan Journal of Medical Research
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Year : 2015  |  Volume : 142  |  Issue : 7  |  Page : 23-29

Seasonal abundance & role of predominant Japanese encephalitis vectors Culex tritaeniorhynchus & Cx. gelidus Theobald in Cuddalore district, Tamil Nadu

1 Centre for Research in Medical Entomology Field Station (ICMR), Vridhachalam, India
2 Centre for Research in Medical Entomology (ICMR), Madurai, India

Correspondence Address:
P Philip Samuel
Centre for Research in Medical Entomology (ICMR), #4. Sarojini Street, Chinna Chokkikulam, Madurai 625 002, Tamil Nadu
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0971-5916.176607

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Background & objectives: Japanese encephalitis (JE) is the leading cause of viral encephalitis in Asia. The first major JE outbreak occurred in 1978 and since 1981 several outbreaks had been reported in the Cuddalore district (erstwhile South Arcot), Tamil Nadu, India. Entomological monitoring was carried out during January 2010 - March 2013, to determine the seasonal abundance and transmission dynamics of the vectors of JE virus, with emphasis on the role of Culex tritaeniorhynchus and Cx. gelidus. Methods: Mosquito collections were carried out fortnightly during dusk hours in three villages viz. Soundara Solapuram, Pennadam, Erappavur of Cuddalore district. Mosquitoes were collected during dusk for a period of one hour in and around the cattle sheds using oral aspirator and torch light. The collected mosquitoes were later identified and pooled to detect JE virus (JEV) infection by enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Results: A total of 46,343 mosquitoes comprising of 25 species and six genera were collected. Species composition included viz, Cx. tritaeniorhynchus (46.26%), Cx. gelidus (43.12%) and other species (10.62%). A total of 17,678 specimens (403 pools) of Cx. gelidus and 14,358 specimens (309 pools) of Cx. tritaeniorhynchus were tested, of which 12 pools of Cx. gelidus and 14 pools of Cx. tritaeniorhynchus were positive for JE virus antigen. The climatic factors were negatively correlated with minimum infection rate (MIR) for both the species, except mean temperature (P<0.05) for Cx. gelidus. Interpretation & conclusions: High abundance of Cx. tritaeniorhynchus and Cx. gelidus was observed compared to other mosquito species in the study area. Detection of JEV antigen in the two species confirmed the maintenance of virus. Appropriate vector control measures need to be taken to reduce the vector abundance.

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