Blood preferences of malaria vectors in Tehran
  Key Words  
  Anopheles, mosquitoes, malaria, ELISA, vectors
  H.R. Basseri, S. Yosafi and S. Moosakazemi
  This study was conducted with aim of investigation of malaria vector hematophagic tendencies base on seasonal activities as well as geographical region in a malaria endemic area, Kahnouj, south of Iran. It was conducted for 14 months from Apr. 2002 up to the end of May 2003. It was based on collection of female anopheline from different shelters and exam their blood meal via ELISA test methods. Five vectors active in the study area were: Anopheles fluviatilis, An. stephensi, An. dthali, An. culicifacies, and An. superpictos. The dominant anopheline in hilly area was An. fluviatilis sibling species T. This species was active during whole year and reached to a peak in December. In contrast, the dominant species spread in flat region was An. stephensi, which shows strongly endophilic behavior with two seasonal activity peaks. Anthropophilic index for An. fluviatilis and An. stephensi was estimated 2.68% and 0.5%, respectively. Population of other species was too low and did not show propensity for human blood. The most malaria cases occurred in the hilly area whereas An. fluviatilis is an actively dominant species. It seems that An. fluviatilis is responsible for transmission of malaria in hilly districts of Kahnouj. Malaria transmission in the study area is much influenced by residents rest habits while a wild vector, An. fluviatilis shows exophilic behavior and uses microclimate shelters to obtain human blood. Use of personal protection such as bed nets instead of residual spraying may be considered as an effective measure in malaria control in hilly regions.