- The Institute
- Travel & Vaccines
It was not before 1953 that the WHO declared Germany officially malaria-free. In the past decade, the mosquito Anopheles atroparvus was essential for malaria transmission in Germany. As it prefers salty breeding waters, it was particularly widespread in Northern Germany and constituted a large proportion of the mosquito population there.
In our last assessment in 2011-2013, we found An. atroparvus much less frequently – both in distribution and in numbers. It was restricted to the coastal areas of Lower Saxony and Schleswig-Holstein. A similar development has been observed in the Netherlands. The cause for its disappearance remains speculative. Possibly, modern, closed buildings may have reduced the mosquitoes’ hibernation retreats. Dutch researchers have also proposed that An. atroparvus might be particularly sensitive to the pollution of stagnant waters, which could damage their breeding sites and thus impair their reproduction.
Renke Lühken, Hanna Jöst, Jonas Schmidt-Chanasit, Egbert Tannich and external co-operation partners (see publication)