The western Kenya insecticide-treated bed net trial
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645


The effect of insecticide (permethrin)-treated bed nets (ITNs) on the spatial distribution of malaria vectors in neighboring villages lacking ITNs was studied during a randomized controlled trial of ITNs in western Kenya. There was a trend of decreased abundance of with decreasing distance from intervention villages both before ( = 0.027) and after ( = 0.002) introduction of ITNs, but this trend was significantly stronger after ITNs were introduced ( = 0.05). For , no pre-intervention trend was observed ( = 0.373), but after the intervention, a trend of decreased abundance with closer proximity to intervention compounds developed ( = 0.027). Reduction in mosquito populations in villages lacking ITNs was most apparent in compounds located within 600 meters of intervention villages. Sporozoite infection rates decreased in control areas following the introduction of ITNs ( < 0.001 for both species), but no spatial association was detected between sporozoite rates and distance to nearest intervention village. We conclude that high coverage of ITNs is associated with a community-wide suppression of mosquito populations that is detectable in neighboring villages lacking ITNs, thereby affording individuals residing in these villages some protection against malaria.


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