[Music plays and an animation image appears of many pink mosquitos moving over the screen]
Narrator: Mosquitos, tiny, buzzing, blood-sucking insects that are one of our deadliest predators.
[Animation image changes to show a mosquito in a box on the left of the screen and a world map with the tropical area highlighted in a box on the right side of the screen]
The Aedes Aegypti is one type of mosquito found in many tropical countries around the world.
[Animation image changes to show a mosquito on the left with two lines emitting from the mosquito to encompass a circle on the right and three disease symbols can be seen inside the circle and text appears: Dengue, Zika, Chikungunya]
It is known for carrying diseases such as Dengue, Zika, and Chikungunya, diseases which lead to significant death and suffering each year.
[Animation image changes to show a picture of mosquito with a cross through it, and a rack of test tubes on the left, and a computer screen showing a world globe and a changing bar graph on the right]
Over the past few years our researchers have been tackling the challenge of mosquito borne diseases by preventing the spread of pathogens and protecting vulnerable communities.
[Music plays and the animation image changes to show a symbol of the Wolbachia bacteria and text appears: Wolbachia]
One method we use is a symbiotic bacteria called Wolbachia.
[Animation image shows pictures of a mosquito, a beetle, a cockroach, a fly, a flea, and a grasshopper surrounding the Wolbachia bacteria symbol]
Wolbachia occurs naturally in 60% of insect species.
[Animation image changes to show a mosquito emerging from the Wolbachia bacteria symbol on the left and connecting to a crossed circle containing the symbols of the different diseases and text appears: Dengue, Zika, Chikungunya]
Australian scientists have found that mosquitos containing a new Wolbachia strain are unable to transmit these deadly diseases.
[Animation image changes to show a hybrid mosquito on the left and a male mosquito on the right and a horizontal arrow between the two and text appears: Modified, Un-modified]
Wolbachia also affects reproduction of the insects that contain it.
[Animation image shows another arrow moving down vertically from the horizontal arrow and the image shows mosquito larvae at the end of the arrow]
If a female containing Wolbachia mates with a male that doesn’t have it all offspring will carry the bacteria.
[Animation image changes to show a computer screen covered with a graph showing the percentage of Aedes mosquitos with Wolbachia on the vertical axis and the time period on the horizontal axis]
Over time, this means the mosquito population will ultimately be replaced with one where all the mosquitos have Wolbachia and cannot spread disease.
[Animation image changes to show a world map on the computer screen and the image shows green pin points on the map]
This method has been successfully trialled in Australia and other countries.
[Camera zooms out to show the world map on the right and a crossed out mosquito and a line graph can be seen on the left of the screen]
These ongoing trials highlight the importance of Wolbachia as a method for controlling the spread of infectious diseases in mosquitos and in turn, local human populations.
[Animation image changes to show pink and green mosquitos on the left and two lines joining the mosquitos to a circle containing symbols of the diseases and text appears: Dengue, Zika, Chikungunya]
We take a long-term approach when addressing the challenge of mosquito borne disease in vulnerable communities.
[Animation image changes to show a city in the background with a row of people standing in front of the buildings]
We partner with local scientists to develop a tailored and sustainable approach that is owned and deployed by local stakeholders.
[Animation image changes to show three documents showing Risk Assessments for Australia, Thailand, and Brazil]
This involves an initial risk assessment as each country’s mosquito challenge is unique.
[Animation image changes to show a computer showing a picture of a tropical island above a picture of a city on the right, and a crossed mosquito and a line graph can be seen on the left of the screen]
This process ensures we understand the environment and local ecology to determine the most appropriate technology and approach to use.
[Animation image changes to show symbols of different nationality people in a group]
Community engagement is a key focus to understand the scope of the issue and its impact on residents and the community at large.
[Animation image changes to show a teacher pointing to a line graph while a group of students listen]
We’re also dedicated to fostering education, and helping build community capability around mosquito research management.
[Animation image changes to show a person using an iPhone connected to Wi-Fi and a city can be seen in the background]
Once we’re in the community and work is underway we use the latest technology to support field work.
[Animation image changes to show a map on a computer screen on the right of the screen and a crossed mosquito and a rack of test tubes on the left of the screen]
We’ve developed a digital dashboard that tracks mosquito populations.
[Camera zooms in on the map on the computer screen and the image shows a blue pinpoint on the map and then lines appear joining the pinpoint to other pink pinpoints]
This provides real-time visualisation of activities where end information is shared across all stakeholder groups. This empowers local partners and supports decision-making throughout the project.
[Animation image changes to show a computer screen showing DNA strands, a line graph, a mosquito, and disease symbols on the right, and a robotic arm on the left lifting a test tube from a rack]
We’re also investing in Next Generation technologies to reduce the impact of mosquito borne diseases.
[Animation image changes to show many green mosquitos on the screen]
This involves precise manipulations of mosquitos to either reduce their capacity to transmit the pathogen, or drive down their population.
[Animation image changes to show the CSIRO logo on a white screen]
We are CSIRO, Australia’s National Science Agency. Work with us and together we can tackle the global challenge of mosquito borne disease.