2.4 Systemic insecticides in dogs to control zoonotic visceral leishmaniasis

Barcelona Institute for Global Health (ISGlobal), Barcelona, Spain - The University of Warwick (WARWICK), Coventry, United Kingdom   - Universidad de Zaragoza (UNIZAR), Zaragoza, Spain   - Verdi R&D, Louveigné, Belgium

Area of research: Prevention
Research programme: Translational Science


(1) Determine the effect of oral insecticides and IGRs, already registered as antiparasitic drugs for dogs, on Phlebotomus survival/development.; (2) To evaluate the impact of oral insecticides in dogs on L. infantum vectors in the field and (3) model the use of systemic insecticides in dogs as a public health measure to control zoonotic visceral leishmaniasis.

Expected results:

(1) 1-2 oral insecticides that are effective against L. infantum vectors;

(2) The effect of using oral insecticides in dogs in sand flies in endemic areas (Spain) and

(3) Provide recommendations on the use of oral insecticides in dogs a public health measure in L. infantum endemic areas


Background: For vector borne diseases, applying insecticide to domestic animals acting as reservoirs of zoonotic pathogens has shown to reduce the risk of infection in humans. Recently, using systemic insecticides in animals (i.e. feed-through, injectable) has been postulated as an alternative vector control method. However the use of systemic insecticides in dogs has not been tested yet.

Methodology: The effect of the different oral molecules (i.e. ivermectine, novaluron, imidacloprid) will be evaluated by exposing the dogs to Phlebotomus a different time points after treatment (Obj 1). The best oral drugs will be evaluated in an endemic area in Spain (Obj 2). A mathematical model will be built to evaluate the effect of mass treatment of dogs with oral insecticides or IGRs in visceral leishmaniasis endemic villages on (1) vector density, (2) leishmania infection/disease in dogs and (3) leishmania infection in people.