The Indian Council of Medical Research has joined hands with an Australian University to develop a strategy to use bacteria for dengue control, the government today said.
"A Task Froce on dengue control has been formulated and Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has signed a Memorandum of Agreement with Monash University in Australia under the 'Eliminate Dengue' programme collaboration in February," Minister of State for Health Anupriya Patel said in a written reply in Lok Sabha.
She said that the collaboration with Monash University proposes to develop a strategy and test the efficacy of Wolbachia-based Aedes-aegypti (mosquito transmitting dengue) control in India.
Wolbachia are bacteria that are naturally found in few insects including mosquitoes.
"Among mosquitoes they have not been naturally found in Aedes-aegypti and Anopheles species. The mosquito strains of Wolbachia are considered biological control agents for the vector-borne diseases control," Patel said.
She also said that Pune-based National Institute of Virology has developed an indigenous Japanese Encephalitis (JE) vaccine Jen Vac in public private partnership with Bharat Biotech.
The government has initiated vaccination with Chinese JE vaccine SA-14-14-2 in endemic districts of India in 2006 against JE, she said.