Screening for adulticidal activity against Anopheles arabiensis in ten plants used as mosquito repellent in South Africa
Background: Due to the development of resistance to synthetic insecticides, adverse effects to human health, non-target organisms and the environment, there is an urgent need to develop new insecticides, which are effective, safe, biodegrable and target-specific. This study was undertaken to evaluate the adulticidal activity of 10 plants used traditionally as mosquito repellents in South Africa. Methods: The dried plant materials were extracted with dichloromethane (DCM) and ethanol (EtOH). The extracts were evaluated for adulticidal activity against Anopheles arabiensis mosquitoes, a potent malaria vector in South Africa. Adult mortality was observed after 24 hours of exposure. Results: All the extracts showed adulticidal activity. The highest activity was observed in both DCM and EtOH extracts of Aloe ferox leaves with 98 and 86% mosquito mortality, respectively. The DCM extract of A. ferox leaves was then subjected to a dose-dependent bioassay to determine the EC50 value. The extract exhibited an EC50 value of 4.92 mg/ml. Conclusion: The results of the present study showed that the DCM extract of A. ferox leaves may have the potential to be used as an insecticide against An. arabiensis. Further studies to isolate and identify active compounds are in progress.