Using human biomass and its spatial...

In the News

Study establishes link between gender, extramarital affairs and HIV

Dar es Salaam. A new Ifakara Health Institute study has found “a significant association between lifetime (proxy) extramarital affairs and HIV infection among women only,” with the risk being significantly …

IHI names winners of research, innovation fund

[Right-Left] Getrud, Beatrice, Theckla, and Tutu.Ifakara Health Institute (IHI) has named recipients of the 2017/18 Director’s Research and Innovation Fund. This is an internal funding mechanism aimed to support specific …

Recent Projects

Development of a new tool for malaria mosquito surveillance to improve vector control

Malaria transmission is influenced not only by vector abundance, but as well by demographic traits such as vector species and age structure, as these influence the intensity by which the …

Demonstrating complete disruption of residual malaria transmission by eliminating Anopheles funestus mosquitoes from rural Tanzanian villages

In rural south-eastern Tanzania, where malaria prevalence has reduced by >60% since 2000, low-to-moderate transmission still persists despite very high coverage with long-lasting insecticidal bednets. Like in most residual transmission …

Using human biomass and its spatial distribution to predict mosquito-borne disease transmission patterns in rural Tanzania

Disease-transmitting mosquitoes are known to preferentially bite bigger people over small people, and households with high occupancy have also been shown to have high Anopheles densities. It is therefore likely that overall directional movement of mosquitoes within villages, and subsequent disease transmission risk, could be greatly influenced by spatial distribution of household biomass. These observations, though widely accepted have not been previously developed into practical actionable methodologies for disease prevention and control. Yet this close  association  between  human aggregations  and  mosquito biting risk may significant influence on malaria parasite prevalence and infectiousness. In this study use controlled experimental hut studies and high resolution household-level sampling of indoor mosquito-biting densities, to demonstrate spatial correlations between human biomass, household occupancy  and indoor malaria vector densities in three villages in south eastern Tanzania. We also assess whether regular household census data could be used to identify households with the greatest Anopheles mosquito biting risk in rural Tanzania. Based on the understanding of how disease-transmitting mosquitoes identify and follow cues from vertebrate hosts, we hypothesize that their dispersal within villages, as determined by distribution of host biomass, could relied upon as an indicator of areas with high biting risk occurs.


Lead Scientists:

Emmanuel Kaindoa

Fredros Okumu

Gerry Killeen



Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine


Wellcome Trust

Projects Location

© Ifakara Health Institute (IHI), 2016