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* Sri Lanka to use sterile insect technique to control mosquitoes
Fri, Nov 9, 2012, 09:13 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Nov 09, Colombo: Sri Lanka Ministry of Health has planned to implement a project using the sterile insect technique (SIT) to control the population of mosquitoes to prevent dengue and other deadly mosquito-borne diseases.

The technique is used to biologically control the mosquito breeding by releasing a large number of male mosquitoes that are sterilized by radiation into the wild.

Dr. Sarath Deniyage, the director of Anti Malaria Campaign said the Ministry of Health would establish a special laboratory for the research in this regard.

According to health officials, this method is in use in other mosquito-affected countries.

The sterile insect technique relies on the proper sterilization of males before mass release, with sterilization currently being achieved through the use of ionizing radiation.

The sterilization must be controlled with correctly applied radiation to produce males not weakened by radiation since weakened males may not be able to compete with wild males for female insects.

The technique has successfully been used in North America to control populations of fruit fly and screwworm fly and tsetse fly that causes sleeping sickness in certain parts of Africa.

However, the technique is costly and may require repeated applications in the infested areas.

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