Vector-borne diseases represent a significant portion of the disease burden in sub Saharan Africa, with those transmitted by parasites such as malaria, leishmaniasis, human African trypanosomosis, onchocerciasis and schistosomiasis, being the most prevalent.

In addition, some arboviral diseases (such as dengue/dengue haemorrhagic fever, yellow fever, West Nile virus, chikungunya and Rift Valley fever), and bacterial diseases (such as plague and typhus), are re-emerging, posing great threats across the continent, and indeed the globe.

Effective prevention strategies for vector-borne diseases have remained elusive, complicated by a variety of factors such as the resistance of insects against insecticides, and the ability of pathogens to become resistant to drugs. As a result, there is great need to develop new strategies for the sustainable control of vector-borne diseases.

icipe’s human health theme aims to contribute towards the reduction, elimination and eradication of vector-borne diseases. The Centre aims to achieve this goal by generating knowledge and developing sustainable tools and strategies that control vectors, break the cycle of transmission, and which can be integrated into other disease management efforts. 

The broad objectives are to:

  • Contribute to the national disease control programmes by focusing on the ecology and behaviour of arthropod vectors;
  • Strengthen linkages and networks with national research and teaching institutions in Africa; 
  • Develop integrated vector management (IVM) strategies for use in different ecological settings; and
  • Contribute to the WHO/AFRO initiative of strengthening vector control capability for the national disease control programmes in Africa.