Isolating and identifying fungi to determine whether their biological properties have the potential to control the population density of mosquitoes

Heliyon. 2019 Aug 31;5(8):e02331. doi: 10.1016/j.heliyon.2019.e02331. eCollection 2019 Aug.


Mosquitoes transmit diseases such as dengue, chikungunya, Zika, and yellow fever to humans. Biological control methods are required for these insects because they can be environmentally friendlier, safer, and more cost-effective than chemical or physical methods currently available. The aim of this research is to identify fungi found in mosquito breeding containers that have the potential to control the population density of mosquitoes. For the identification, water samples were taken from mosquito breeding containers situated in seven districts of Bangkok to obtain pure cultures. Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) was extracted from the cultures then sent for sequencing and analyzing. The results show that fourteen strains of fungi were isolated. The most common strain found was Aspergillus spp., which was present in 31 of the 78 fungi samples. The strains Metarhizium anisopliae and Penicilium citrinum were found to be interesting because they may have the potential to act as entomopathogenic fungi. The biological properties of these strains should be further investigated because they could help in the fight against mosquito-borne diseases.

Keywords: Biological control; Entomopathogenic fungi; Microbiology; Mosquito; Zoology.