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The use of insect pathogenic fungi is a promising alternative to chemical control against mosquitoes. Among the Hyphomycetes isolated from insects for mosquito control, the genus Aspergillus remains the least studied. In September 2005, four fungi were isolated from the Senegalese locust, Oedaleus senegalensis Kraus (Orthoptera: Acrididae), collected in Dakar, Senegal. One of these fungi, identified as Aspergillus clavatus, Desmazières (Eurotiales: Trichocomaceae) was highly pathogenic against larvae of the mosquitoes Aedes aegypti L., Anopheles gambiae s.l. Giles and Culex quinquefasciatus Say (Diptera: Culicidae). An application of 1.2 mg/ml dry conidia yielded 100% mortality after 24 hours against both Ae. aegypti and Cx. quinquefasciatus while with An. gambiae it was 95%. With unidentified species in the genus Aspergillus, mortality after 24 h was <5% against all the larval species. Application of A. clavatus produced in a wheat powder medium using doses ranging between 4.3 to 21×107 spores/ml, caused 11 to 68% mortality against Cx. quinquefasciatus at 24h, and 37 to 100% against Ae. aegypti. Microscopic observations showed fungal germination on both Ae. aegypti and Cx. quinquefasciatus larvae. Histological studies revealed that A. clavatus penetrated the cuticle, invaded the gut and disintegrated its cells. Some Cx. quinquefasciatus larvae, treated with A. clavatus reached the pupal stage and produced infected adults. However, the infection was mainly located on the extremity of their abdomen. These results suggest that A. clavatus could be an effective tool to manage mosquito proliferation.
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