Similarities between DDT and pyrethroid insecticides have led to widespread concern that cross-resistance between them might limit the usefulness of the latter. Both types of insecticide have similarities in chemical structure, both have a negative temperature coefficient (ie. they are more active at lower temperatures), both act as neurotoxins on sodium channels, and both produce the twin effects of knockdown and kill. As discussed by Tom Miller (see pages S8-S12) there is firm evidence for Pyrethroid resistance in some species of medical and veterinary importance - especially in the horn fly, Haemotobia irritans. But in the case of anopheline mosquitoes, the evidence for pyrethroid resistance is much less strong. As Colin Malcolm explains here, a critical analysis of available data indicates that true physiological resistance of anophelines to pyrethroids is much less widespread than previous commentaries suggest. Moreover, the risk of cross-resistance between pyrethroids and DDT may have been over-emphasized, since different resistance mechanisms appear to be involved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S13-5
JournalParasitology today (Personal ed.)
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 1988


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