Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli

Crevalcore, Italy

Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli

Crevalcore, Italy

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Carrieri M.,Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli | Albieri A.,Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli | Angelini P.,Emilia Romagna Region Public Health Service | Baldacchini F.,Emilia Romagna Region Public Health Service | Bellini R.,Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli
Journal of Vector Ecology | Year: 2011

The chikungunya virus outbreak that occurred in 2007 in northern Italy (Emilia-Romagna region) prompted the development of a large scale monitoring system of the population density of Aedes albopictus (Skuse, 1894), comparable at the provincial and municipal levels. In 2007, egg density data presented an aggregated distribution (VMR >1) and Taylor's power law was applied to calculate the minimum number of ovitraps needed to obtain the prefixed precision levels: D=0.2 in the areas where the chikungunya epidemic occurred and D=0.3 in all the other urban areas >600 ha. The estimated minimum ovitrap number was then used to set up a monitoring network at the regional scale in season 2008 (May-October). In 242 municipalities 2,741 ovitraps were activated and the 2008 sampled data showed a similar aggregated distribution as in 2007. The adequacy of the monitoring design was evaluated by recalculating the Taylor's coefficients and the minimum ovitrap number for each urban area >600 ha using the 2008 egg density data. The comparison between the two estimates showed that the minimum ovitrap number calculated in 2007 was underestimated by 2.7% in weeks 22-41 but was overestimated by 29.4% if referring to the period of highest population density (weeks 27-37). The low cost of the proposed monitoring system, based on the use of fortnightly checked ovitraps, could make it economically sustainable even in a non-epidemic season. © 2011 The Society for Vector Ecology.


Bellini R.,Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli | Petric D.,University of Novi Sad | Scholte E.-J.,National Center for Monitoring of Vectors | Zeller H.,Centers for Disease Control and Prevention | Marrama Rakotoarivony L.,Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Parasites and Vectors | Year: 2013

Background: The recent notifications of autochthonous cases of dengue and chikungunya in Europe prove that the region is vulnerable to these diseases in areas where known mosquito vectors (Aedes albopictus and Aedes aegypti) are present. Strengthening surveillance of these species as well as other invasive container-breeding aedine mosquito species such as Aedes atropalpus, Aedes japonicus, Aedes koreicus and Aedes triseriatus is therefore required. In order to support and harmonize surveillance activities in Europe, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) launched the production of 'Guidelines for the surveillance of invasive mosquitoes in Europe'. This article describes these guidelines in the context of the key issues surrounding invasive mosquitoes surveillance in Europe. Methods. Based on an open call for tender, ECDC granted a pan-European expert team to write the guidelines draft. It content is founded on published and grey literature, contractor's expert knowledge, as well as appropriate field missions. Entomologists, public health experts and end users from 17 EU/EEA and neighbouring countries contributed to a reviewing and validation process. The final version of the guidelines was edited by ECDC (Additional file 1). Results: The guidelines describe all procedures to be applied for the surveillance of invasive mosquito species. The first part addresses strategic issues and options to be taken by the stakeholders for the decision-making process, according to the aim and scope of surveillance, its organisation and management. As the strategy to be developed needs to be adapted to the local situation, three likely scenarios are proposed. The second part addresses all operational issues and suggests options for the activities to be implemented, i.e. key procedures for field surveillance of invasive mosquito species, methods of identification of these mosquitoes, key and optional procedures for field collection of population parameters, pathogen screening, and environmental parameters. In addition, methods for data management and analysis are recommended, as well as strategies for data dissemination and mapping. Finally, the third part provides information and support for cost estimates of the planned programmes and for the evaluation of the applied surveillance process. Conclusion: The 'Guidelines for the surveillance of invasive mosquitoes in Europe' aim at supporting the implementation of tailored surveillance of invasive mosquito species of public health importance. They are intended to provide support to professionals involved in mosquito surveillance or control, decision/policy makers, stakeholders in public health and non-experts in mosquito surveillance. Surveillance also aims to support control of mosquito-borne diseases, including integrated vector control, and the guidelines are therefore part of a tool set for managing mosquito-borne disease risk in Europe. © 2013 Schaffner et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


Tamba M.,Instituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale della Lombardia e dellEmilia Romagna | Bonilauri P.,Instituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale della Lombardia e dellEmilia Romagna | Bellini R.,Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli | Calzolari M.,Instituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale della Lombardia e dellEmilia Romagna | And 4 more authors.
Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases | Year: 2011

Usutu virus (USUV) is a mosquito-borne flavivirus belonging to the Japanese encephalitis serocomplex, recently related to neurological disease in immunosuppressed patients. In the same area of Northern Italy where USUV human cases occurred in 2009, a regional West Nile virus (WNV) surveillance program based on mosquito monitoring and wild birds screening has been implemented since 2008. Mosquito pools and wild birds were tested using three different polymerase chain reactions (Flavivirus, WNV, and USUV). During summer 2009, 56 pools (54 consisting of Culex pipiens and 2 of Aedes albopictus) and 27 pools (Cx. pipiens) out of 1789 mosquito pools were, respectively, USUV and WNV positive. Moreover, out of 1218 wild birds tested, 44 were WNV positive, whereas only 11 birds were USUV positive by polymerase chain reaction. Data collected during 2009 prove a cocirculation of USUV and WNV in Northern Italy, but these two viruses show different incidence values in both mosquitoes and birds, suggesting involvement of different animals (other bird species or mammals) in their natural cycles. The cocirculation of WNV and USUV poses a new potential threat to human health in this area. The extent of WNV surveillance to other Flaviviruses will require new diagnostic procedures able to process a large number of samples in a limited period of time and highlights the importance of developing more specific serological tests that could be used in field. © Copyright 2011, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. 2011.


Oter K.,Istanbul University | Gunay F.,Hacettepe University | Tuzer E.,Istanbul University | Linton Y.-M.,U.S. Army | And 2 more authors.
Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases | Year: 2013

Despite its confirmed establishment in neighboring Greece and Bulgaria, the presence of the Oriental invasive species Stegomyia albopicta (Skuse) (=Aedes albopictus) has never been confirmed in Turkey. Active surveillance for this container-breeding species was carried out using oviposition traps at 15 discrete sites in the towns of Ipsala (n=8 sites), Kesan (n=5) (Edirne District), and Malkara (n=2) (Tekirdag District) in the Thrace region of northwestern Turkey, from May 23 through November 10, 2011. Eggs collected were reared to the fourth larval instar and adult stages where possible to facilitate integrated morphological and molecular species identification. DNA barcodes (658 bp of the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase I [COI] gene) were compared with all four potentially invasive Stegomyia species: St. aegypti, St. albopicta, St. cretina, and St. japonica. Sequences generated for samples collected in Thrace Region were herein confirmed as St. albopicta, the first record of this vector species in Turkey. Eggs of St. albopicta were detected in two discrete localities: (1) In the grounds of a restaurant in Kesan (in week 36), and (2) in the customs area of the Turkish-Greek border at Ipsala (in weeks 32 and 38). Multiple detection of St. albopicta eggs indicates the possible establishment of the species in northwestern Turkey. Finding this important disease vector has implications for public health and requires the implementation of active vector monitoring programs and targeted vector suppression strategies to limit the spread of this invasive vector species in Turkey. © 2013 Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.


Puggioli A.,Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli | Balestrino F.,Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli | Damiens D.,International Atomic Energy Agency | Lees R.S.,International Atomic Energy Agency | And 5 more authors.
Journal of Medical Entomology | Year: 2013

A fundamental step in establishing a mass production system is the development of a larval diet that promotes high adult performance at a reasonable cost. To identify a suitable larval diet for Aedes albopictus (Skuse), three diets were compared: a standard laboratory diet used at the Centro Agricoltura Ambiente, Italy (CAA) and two diets developed specifically for mosquito mass rearing at the FAO/IAEA Laboratory, Austria. The two IAEA diets, without affecting survival to the pupal stage, resulted in a shorter time to pupation and to emergence when compared with the CAA diet. At 24 h from pupation onset, 50 and 90% of the male pupae produced on the CAA and IAEA diets, respectively, had formed and could be collected. The diet received during the larval stage affected the longevity of adult males with access to water only, with best results observed when using the CAA larval diet. However, similar longevity among diet treatments was observed when males were supplied with sucrose solution. No differences were observed in the effects of larval diet on adult male size or female fecundity and fertility. Considering these results, along with the relative costs of the three diets, the IAEA 2 diet is found to be the preferred choice for mass rearing of Aedes albopictus, particularly if a sugar meal can be given to adult males before release, to ensure their teneral reserves are sufficient for survival, dispersal, and mating in the field. © 2013 Entomological Society of America.


Bellini R.,Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli | Balestrino F.,Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli | Balestrino F.,International Atomic Energy Agency | Medici A.,Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli | And 3 more authors.
Journal of Medical Entomology | Year: 2013

Mating competitiveness trials have been conducted in large net-screened enclosures (8 by 5 by 2.8 m) built in a natural shaded environment, in the summers of 2006, 2007, 2008, and 2009 in northern Italy. Aedes albopictus (Skuse) males were radio-sterilized by applying gamma radiations at doses in the range 30-60 Gy. Gamma radiation was administered to aged pupae at the rate of 2.3 Gy/min. Reared radiated males (originally collected in Rimini, Forlì, Bologna, Matera, Pinerolo) and hybrid radiated males were tested against wild fertile males (originated from eggs collected in Rimini and Cesena) and reared fertile males, in multiple comparisons for mating competitiveness with reared or wild females. The ratio was kept constant at 100-100-100 (fertile males-radiated males-virgin females). Mating competitiveness was estimated through the calculation of the hatching rate of the eggs laid in oviposition traps positioned inside enclosures. No clear effect of the strains tested (reared, wild, or hybrid) was found. Results demonstrated that reducing the radiation dose from 60 to 30 Gy increases males' competitiveness. Laboratory investigations conducted after controversial results in the 2006 preliminary trials, showed that radiation induces precociousness in adult male emergence. © 2013 Entomological Society of America.


PubMed | Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli, International Atomic Energy Agency and University of Bologna
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Journal of medical entomology | Year: 2017

Critical to successful application of the sterile insect technique against Aedes albopictus (Skuse) is the development of an efficient and standardized rearing protocol to be employed in the mass production system. In this study, several life history traits of Ae. albopictus were analyzed to identify upper and lower thresholds of larval density and diet concentration. Survival to pupation, time to pupation, and sex ratio were evaluated under a range of larval densities (0.5-5 larvae/ml) and food levels (0.05-1.6mg/larva/d) using two larval diets (one locally developed; one developed by the FAO/IAEA). The larvae reared at 28C, at a density of 2 larvae/ml and receiving a food dose equal to 0.6mg/larva/d of a diet consisting of 50% tuna meal, 50% bovine liver powder (the FAO/IAEA diet), and, as an additive, 0.2g of Vitamin Mix per 100ml of diet solution, developed in 5 d and had 90% survival to the pupal stage. With this rearing regime male pupae production 24h after the onset of pupation was the highest; these pupae were 94% male.


Carrieri M.,Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli | Angelini P.,Public Health Service | Venturelli C.,Local Public Health Unit | MacCagnani R.,Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli | Bellini R.,Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli
Journal of Medical Entomology | Year: 2012

Our study compared different estimates of adult mosquito abundance (Pupal Demographic Survey [PDS], Human Landing Collection [HLC], Number of Bites declared by Citizens during interviews [NBC]) to the mean number of eggs laid in ovitraps. We then calculated a disease risk threshold in terms of number of eggs per ovitrap above which an arbovirus epidemic may occur. The study was conducted during the summers of 2007 and 2008 in the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy where a Chikungunya epidemic occurred in 2007. Ovitrap monitoring lasted from May to September, while adult sampling by means of PDS, HLC, and NBC was repeated three times each summer. Based on calculated rate of increase of the disease (R 0) and the number of bites per human per day measured during the outbreak, we estimated that only 10.1% of the females transmitted the Chikungunya virus in the principal focus. Under our conditions, we demonstrated that a positive correlation can be found between the females' density estimated by means of PDS, HLC, and NBC and the mean number of eggs in the ovitraps. We tested our hypothesis during the 2007 secondary outbreak of CHIKV in Cervia, and found that R 0 calculated based on the number of biting females estimated from the egg density was comparable to the R 0 calculated based on the progression of the human cases. The identification of an epidemic threshold based on the mean egg density may define the high risk areas and focus control programs. © 2012 Entomological Society of America.


Carrieri M.,Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli | Angelini P.,Public Health Service | Venturelli C.,Local Public Health Unit | Maccagnani B.,Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli | Bellini R.,Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli
Journal of Medical Entomology | Year: 2011

The population of Aedes albopictus (Skuse) (Diptera: Culicidae) was measured in four towns in northern Italy by means of Stegomyia indices (house index: percentage of houses with at least one active breeding site; container index: percentage of containers with larvae; and Breteau index: number of active breeding sites per premises), pupae per premises index (PPI), pupae per hectare index (PHI), and ovitrap monitoring. A detailed investigation on types and number of productive or potential larval habitats in the inspected premises was performed. Catch basins were the most productive breeding sites in both private and public areas. The influence of the premises maintenance and premises shading indices (PMI and PSI) on the population indices and the correlations between the latter and egg density were assessed. The highest PPI was found in badly maintained premises, most times combined with shady coverage. Stegomyia indices and PPI were well correlated with each other, but not with the PHI, which also included the pupae collected in public areas. We obtained a highly positive correlation (R = 0.86) between the PHI and weekly mean egg density estimated 714 d after inspection of the premises. The number of females per hectare, calculated using the Focks model, was correlated with the mean egg density of the week after sampling (R = 0.79), and we propose that ovitrap monitoring can be used to evaluate the efficiency of the control activities or to determine a mean egg density threshold for epidemic risk evaluation. © 2011 Entomological Society of America.


Calzolari M.,Instituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale Della Lombardia E Dellemilia Romagna B Ubertini | Albieri A.,Centro Agricoltura Ambiente G Nicoli
International Journal of Health Geographics | Year: 2013

Background: In 2011, a new orthobunyavirus, named the Schmallenberg virus (SBV), was discovered in Europe. Like the related Shamonda virus, SBV is an arbovirus (arthropod-borne virus). After its discovery, the virus was detected in a wide area in north-western Europe, an unexpected finding in a territory where climatic conditions would not seem ideal for arbovirus transmission. This sudden expansion suggests the effect of 2011 drought as a key factor that may have triggered SBV circulation. The possible influence of drought, recorded in north-western Europe in early 2011, on virus circulation was evaluated.Methods and results: The locations of SBV detections in Europe until April 2012 were obtained, and area of virus circulation was evaluated by kernel density estimation. Precipitation data in SBV circulation area, summarized by the 3 month precipitation indexes of May, were compared with precipitation data outside that area, confirming driest conditions in that area.Conclusions: The onset of drought conditions recorded in the SBV detection area in early 2011 may have promoted the circulation of this virus. A correlation between circulation of some arboviruses and drought has been reported elsewhere. This was mainly explained by an effect of water deficit on the environment, which altered the relationships between vectors and reservoirs, but this correlation might be also the result of unknown effects of drought on the vectors. The effect of drought conditions on arbovirus circulation is most likely underestimated and should be considered, since it could promote expansion of arboviruses into new areas in a global warming scenario. © 2013 Calzolari and Albieri; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

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