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Evaluation of plant-mediated synthesized silver nanoparticles against vector mosquitoes

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Diseases transmitted by blood-feeding mosquitoes, such as dengue fever, dengue hemorrhagic fever, Japanese encephalitis, malaria, and filariasis, are increasing in prevalence, particularly in tropical and subtropical zones. To control mosquitoes and mosquito-borne diseases, which have worldwide health and economic impacts, synthetic insecticide-based interventions are still necessary, particularly in situations of epidemic outbreak and sudden increases of adult mosquitoes. Green nanoparticle synthesis has been achieved using environmentally acceptable plant extract and eco-friendly reducing and capping agents. In view of the recently increased interest in developing plant origin insecticides as an alternative to chemical insecticide, in the present study, the adulticidal activity of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) synthesized using Heliotropium indicum plant leaf extract against adults of Anopheles stephensi, Aedes aegypti, and Culex quinquefasciatus was determined. Adult mosquitoes were exposed to varying concentrations of aqueous extract of H. indicum and synthesized AgNPs for 24 h. AgNPs were rapidly synthesized using the leaf extract of H. indicum, and the formation of nanoparticles was observed within 6 h. The results recorded from UV–vis spectrum, Fourier transform infrared, X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, and transmission electron microscopy support the biosynthesis and characterization of AgNPs. The maximum efficacy was observed in synthesized AgNPs against the adult of A. stephensi (lethal dose (LD)50 = 26.712 μg/mL; LD90 = 49.061 μg/mL), A. aegypti (LD50 = 29.626 μg/mL; LD90 = 54.269 μg/mL), and C. quinquefasciatus (LD50 = 32.077 μg/mL; LD90 = 58.426 μg/mL), respectively. No mortality was observed in the control. These results suggest that the leaf aqueous extracts of H.indicum and green synthesis of AgNPs have the potential to be used as an ideal eco-friendly approach for the control of the A. stephensi, A. aegypti, and C. quinquefasciatus. This is the first report on the adulticidal activity of the plant extracts and AgNPs.

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The authors would like to thank the Professor and Head of the Department of Zoology, Annamalai University, for the laboratory facilities provided. The authors would also like to acknowledge the cooperation of staff members of the VCRC (ICMR), Pondicherry and thank Dr. S. Ramesh, Professor and Head, Veterinary College, Vepery, Chennai for TEM analysis.

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Correspondence to Marimuthu Govindarajan.

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Veerakumar, K., Govindarajan, M. & Hoti, S.L. Evaluation of plant-mediated synthesized silver nanoparticles against vector mosquitoes. Parasitol Res 113, 4567–4577 (2014). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00436-014-4147-7

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  • AgNPs
  • Adulticidal activity
  • Heliotropium indicum
  • Mosquitoes