Defra - Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

Science Search

Science and Research Projects

Return to Science Search homepage   Return to Project List

Potential targets for biologically based novel methods of control of the sheep scab mite by study of its basic biology and endocrinology - OD0539

Description
Main objective:
The main objective of the proposed work is to study the basic biology of the sheep scan mite in order to identify potential targets for new methods of control which will avoid the need for conventional toxic chemicals. It will achieve this by the development of an in vitro feeding and rearing method which will be used to obtain sufficient mites for investigating its endocrinology. Information obtained from both of the above parts of this study will rpovide better understanding of factors which are critical for mte's survival. These factors will be prioritised in terms of their potential to form the basis of new control methods.

Policy relevance:
The proposed work addresses the needs of MAFF to protect the welfare of animals and to reduce the risks to consumers and the environmnet from pharmaceutical products, antimicrobials and other chemicals.

Intended use of results:
Those factors identified to have promising potential for new control methods for the sheep scab mite will be the subject of further proposals to develop such methods; the rearing method will facilitate other investigations to minimise the pest status of this species; knowledge from the endocrinology study will act as a model for future studies on other mite species with significant pest potential. Inital findings from this project that are promising are needed before industry will develop them further, through LINK or directly.
Objective
The main objective of the proposed work is to study the basic biology of the sheep scab mite in order to identify potential targets for new methods of control which will avoid the need for conventional toxic chemicals. To achieve this, the work has been divided into three modules which have the following objectives.
1. To develop an in vitro feeding and rearing method for the sheep scab mite Psoroptes communis var ovis to provide a sufficient supply of healthy mites for studies to identify new methods for its biological control.

2. To improve the scientific understaning of the endocrine physiology of the sheep scab mite, Psoroptes communis var ovis, including establishing the presence of known invertebrate hormones and neurohormones, determination of their mode of action, and defining the underlying mechanisms regulation critical physiological processess in representative target pest species to allow investigation of the potential for disruption of mite endocrine mediated processess as the bassiss of control methods.

3. To use the infromation obtained form the above studies of rearing and endocrinology to identify and prioritise factors which are critical for survival fo the mite and therefore which could form the basis of new methods for biological control which would meet MAFF aims by being effective whilst posing no threat toe ither human health or the environment.
Project Documents
• Final Report : Potential Targets for biologically based novel methods of control of the sheep scab mite by study of its basic biology and endocrinology   (125k)
• Final Report : Potential targets for biologically based novel methods of control of the sheep scab mite by study of its basic biology and endocrinology   (125k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2000

To: 2003

Cost: £418,813
Contractor / Funded Organisations
Central Science Laboratory
Keywords
Animal Diseases              
Animal Health              
Biotechnology              
Control              
Ovine              
Parasites              
Plants and Animals              
Sheep              
Sheep Scab              
Fields of Study
Animal Health