The Use of Permethrin-Impregnated Wall Cloth (Mbu Cloth) for Control of Vectors of Malaria and Leishmaniases in Kenya — II. Effect on Phlebotomine Sandfly Populations

  • Mutuku J. Mutinga
  • Mulenda Basimike
  • Clifford M. Mutero
  • Augustine M. Ngindu
Research Article


In order to evaluate the effect of permethrin-treated wall cloth against phlebotomine sandflies, a study lasting 26 months (February 1989 to March 1991) was conducted in Marigat Location of Baringo District, Kenya, an endemic focus of both visceral and cutaneous leishmaniases. In six experimental villages, a total of 2000 houses were fitted with cloth made of cotton and impregnated with permethrin EC 20% at a dosage of 0.5 g/m2 diluted in water. Houses in the two control villages were not fitted with cloths and were located 1.5 km away from the experimental area. Traps made of clear polythene sheeting were coated with castor oil and placed inside houses to collect endophilic sandflies. In the experimental villages, the permethrin-treated wall cloth (called Mbu cloth) reduced the population of sandflies found inside houses by 52-73%. Phlebotomus martini and P. duboscqi, vectors of visceral and cutaneous leishmaniases, were reduced by 76 and 85% respectively. In the experimental villages, highly significant differences were observed between the average numbers of sandflies collected before deployment of the treated wall cloth and those observed after the third treatment of the cloth. No major sandfly reduction was observed however, in the control villages. There was also evidence of feeding reduction due to the permethrin.

Key Words

Sandflies Phlebotomus spp. Sergentomyia spp. permethrin wall cloth evaluation Kenya 


Afin d’étudier les effets d’écran traité à la permethrine sur les phlébotomes, une étude a été effectuée pendant 26 mois (Février 1989 à Mars 1991) dans un foyer endemic de leishmaniose viscérale et cutanée dans la localité de Marigat, District de Baringo au Kenya. Dans six villages experimentaux, des écrans impregnés à raison d’une dose de 0,5 g/cm2 de permethrine 20% EC, diluée dans l’eau ont été fixés à l’intérieur de 2000 maisons. Les deux villages témoins, situés à 1,5 km des zones traitées, n’ont pas reçu d’écrans. Les pièges “collants” ont été placés dans des maisons pour attraper les phlébotomes endophiles. Dans les villages experimentaux, les écrans traités à la permethrine, appelés “Mbu cloth” ont réduit la population des phlébotomes endophiles dans l’ordre de 52-73%. Phlebotomus martini et P. duboscqi, vecteurs des leishmanioses viscerale et cutanée respectivement, ont été reduits dans l’ordre de 76 et 85%. Dans des villages experimentaux, des differences hautement significatives ont été observées entre les moyennes des phlébotomes attrapés avant le déploiement d’écrans et ceux collectés après traitement. Cependant, il n’y avait pas de réduction majeure des phlébotomes dans les villages témoins. Aussi, il était évident que la réduction du taux d’alimentation des phlébotomes était due aux effets du permethrine.

Mots Clés

Phlébotomes Phlebotomus spp. Sergentomyia spp. écran évaluation Kenya 


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Copyright information

© ICIPE 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mutuku J. Mutinga
    • 1
  • Mulenda Basimike
    • 1
  • Clifford M. Mutero
    • 1
  • Augustine M. Ngindu
    • 2
  1. 1.The International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (ICIPE)NairobiKenya
  2. 2.Division of Vector Borne Diseases (DVBD)Ministry of HealthNairobiKenya

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