Good Medical Entomology Laboratories Practices (GMELP) in India: A Concept Note
Vectors of malaria, filaria, dengue, chikungunya, zika, japanese encephalitis, and kala-azar play an important role in the disease transmission in different eco-settings with variable climatic conditions. Ticks, mites, and fleas also pose a threat to new emerging and re-emerging vector-borne diseases, i.e. Kyasanur Forest Disease (KFD), Crimean Congo Hemorrhagic Fever (CCHF), scrub typhus, and other rickettsioses. Now, the time has come that field oriented entomological work has to shift from open, field based towards closed medical entomological laboratories for undertaking molecular research and pathogen/ virus detection among vector species handling them by minimising human risks. It is imperative to note that there is a strong need for a standard protocol for effective medical entomological laboratory practices while handling the pathogen carrying vector species under laboratory conditions. This may help to prevent the transmission of pathogens/ viruses in case of accidental release of vectors carrying pathogens/ viruses from the entomology laboratories. Such protocols would always help the scientists to minimise risks working in closed conditions. Though, there are guidelines/ procedures available for developing medical entomology laboratory, having facilities for insect rearing, its handling and equipment, however, no specific published protocol or guidelines exist presently in the Indian context. In the present manuscript, the need for a standard protocol for arthropod containment levels (ACLs 1- 4) along with the appropriate bio-safety levels based on the risk potential of pathogen carried by the vector species has been discussed for its application at the ground by the respective health authorities/ institutions.
The presence of Standard Operating Procedures (SoPs) and guidelines on Good Medical Entomology Laboratory Practices (GMELP) would help the professionals working in a medical entomology laboratory to minimise risks. There is a need to develop and follow Good Medical Entomology Laboratory Practices (GMELP) for handling the vectors (Arthropods) carrying the pathogens/ viruses at the national/ state/ district level as well as by the research institutes, medical colleges, and universities. The present concept note shall help to provide a guiding principle to develop standard operating procedure (SoP)/ Guidelines for GMELP.
How to cite this article:
Sharma SN, Kumawat R, Singh SK. Good Medical Entomology Laboratories Practices in India: A Concept Note. J Commun Dis. 2022;54(1):150-155.
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