Local science leaders support Wolbachia method
March 14, 2019 2:52 pm
Fiji science leaders added their names with the backing of the World Mosquito Program’s self-sustaining Wolbachia method.
The WMP’s project in Fiji, aimed at reducing outbreaks of mosquito-borne diseases, is expanding from the Central to the Western Division.
Interim Science Dean for the University of Fiji, Priyatma Singh says they are currently working on a series of climate change and health-related research projects, and there is research out there showing the trend where they have a rise in dengue cases after events such as flooding and cyclones – something which is becoming a usual occurrence.
Singh says what the Wolbachia method is doing is using safe and natural bacteria to control or reduce these outbreaks.
Meanwhile, Fiji National University’s Head of School for Applied Science, Ulukalesi Tamata says, it’s promising to see results from WMP’s first project sites in Northern Queensland, Australia, which showed once Wolbachia was at high levels in the local mosquito population, and there was no evidence of local dengue transmission.