Mosquito-borne arboviruses diseases cause a substantial public health burden within their expanding range. To date, their control relies on synthetic insecticides and repellents aimed to control the competent mosquito vectors. However, their use is hampered by their high economic, environmental, and human health impacts. Natural products may represent a valid eco-friendly alternative to chemical pesticides to control mosquitoes, and mosquito-borne parasitic diseases. The aim of this work was to combine the chemical and sensorial profiles with the bioactivity data of Salvia spp. essential oils (EOs) to select the most suitable EO to be used as a repellent and insecticide against the invasive mosquito Aedes albopictus (Diptera: Culicidae), vector of pathogens and parasites, and to describe the EOs smell profile. To do this, the EOs of four Salvia species, namely S. dolomitica, S. dorisiana, S. sclarea, and S. somalensis were extracted, chemically analyzed and tested for their bioactivity as larvicides and repellents against Ae. albopictus. Then, the smell profiles of the EOs were described by a panel of assessors. The LC50 of the EOs ranged from 71.08 to 559.77 μL L-1 for S. dorisiana and S. sclarea, respectively. S. sclarea EO showed the highest repellence among the tested EOs against Ae. albopictus females (RD95 = 12.65 nL cm-2), while the most long-lasting, at the dose of 20 nL cm-2, was S. dorisiana (Complete Protection Time = 43.28 ± 3.43 min). S. sclarea EO showed the best smell profile, while S. dolomitica EO the worst one with a high number of off-flavors. Overall, all the EOs, with the exception of the S. dolomitica one, were indicated as suitable for "environmental protection", while S. dorisiana and S. sclarea were indicated as suitable also for "Body care".
Keywords: essential oil composition; insecticide; mosquito-borne arboviruses diseases; mosquitoes; repellent; sensory quality.