IVCC: developing robust innovation in vector-control
IVCC was established in 2005 with a mission to deliver novel public health vector control insecticides, tools and solutions to end-users. These new vector control products are being developed to replace, be in addition to, or be used in partnership with existing products whose field performance is challenged by the rapid onset of mosquito resistance to insecticides.
Much of the focus has been on restoring or improving the performance of long-lasting insecticidal nets (LLINs) or products for indoor residual spraying (IRS). More recently, significant progress has been made in developing Attractive Targeted Sugar Baits (ATSBs) to block outdoor/residual malaria transmission.
Historically, IVCC has focused on the prevention of malaria transmission in sub-Saharan Africa but has always recognized the potential of its pipeline of products against other disease vectors such as the Aedes aegypti mosquito which transmits dengue, Zika and chikungunya viruses.
In 2016 IVCC was commissioned by USAID under the ‘’Grand Challenge for Combatting Zika and Future Threats” initiative to provide guidance and support to a set of proof of concept vector management projects which aim to prevent the transmission of Zika. The diagram shows the nine Grand Challenge projects that IVCC has been supporting. Four projects focus on spatial repellents, aimed at preventing biting, two are biorational control initiatives, two are insect traps that automate counting and insect identification and one is a human scent mimic attractant. On completion of this program in mid-2019 it is anticipated that some of the products emerging from these projects will be ready for the next stage of development.
Alongside this initiative, the UK’s Department for Foreign and International Development (DFID) recently agreed to provide IVCC with additional funding for four studies on Aedes control, two of which build upon and support projects already underway within the USAID Grand Challenge initiative.
Earlier this year, as part of the Australian Government’s Indo-Pacific Health Security initiative, IVCC received a five-year A$18.75m grant from their Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) to evaluate and test the suitability of new vector control products, including those developed in partnership with IVCC for malaria control in sub-Saharan Africa to help fight other Neglected Tropical Diseases such as dengue in the Indo-Pacific region. To ensure that Australia has a toolbox of vector control solutions that can address potential future health security challenges IVCC is currently undertaking comprehensive technical and market landscaping studies and establishing a scientific and testing platform with a goal of selecting a portfolio of projects and products which are suited to the Indo-Pacific needs which can be evaluated and developed within a five-year timeframe.
Nick Hamon, CEO of IVCC, said: “We support the campaign for a World Dengue Day and we are working in partnership with funders, innovators, industry and testing facilities, to develop a new and robust portfolio of vector control interventions to make a significant impact in the fight against vector-borne diseases, including dengue.”