Key to contemporary management of diseases such as malaria, dengue, and filariasis is control of the insect vectors responsible for transmission. Insecticide-based interventions have contributed to declines in disease burdens in many areas, but this progress could be threatened by the emergence of insecticide resistance in vector populations. Insecticide resistance is likewise a major concern in agriculture, where insect pests can cause substantial yield losses. Here, we explore overlaps between understanding and managing insecticide resistance in agriculture and in public health. We have used the Global Plan for Insecticide Resistance Management in malaria vectors, developed under the auspices of the World Health Organization Global Malaria Program, as a framework for this exploration because it serves as one of the few cohesive documents for managing a global insecticide resistance crisis. Generally, this comparison highlights some fundamental differences between insect control in agriculture and in public health. Moreover, we emphasize that the success of insecticide resistance management strategies is strongly dependent on the biological specifics of each system. We suggest that the biological, operational, and regulatory differences between agriculture and public health limit the wholesale transfer of knowledge and practices from one system to the other. Nonetheless, there are some valuable insights from agriculture that could assist in advancing the existing Global Plan for Insecticide Resistance Management framework.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)