HAVANA - China will
mass-produce a Cuban pesticide effective against dengue-carrying mosquitos,
Cuba's foreign ministry said Sunday.
A mosquito is bloated with blood as it inserts its stinger
into human flesh in this undated photo released by the United States
Department of Agriculture. China will mass-produce a Cuban pesticide
effective against dengue-carrying mosquitos, Cuba's foreign ministry said
Cuban scientists developed and patented Bactivec, a biolarvicide which kills
larvae of the Aedes aegypti mosquito, the dengue vector, the ministry statement
According to the agreement, China will defray the cost of building the
factory in China, and Cuban Labiofam scientists will provide the technology and
know-how to build it.
Cuba will purchase six million units annually of the insecticide, and China
will donate another half million to Cuba, the statement said.
Cuba suffered four dengue outbreaks during 1977-2002. In the most recent
outbreak 14,524 cases were reported between June 2001 and March 2002, including
81 cases of dengue haemorrhagic fever, three of which were fatal.
Dengue fever has is found in the tropics throughout the world, and the World
Health Organization estimates there could be some 50 million cases each year,
and 500,000 cases of more dangerous dengue haemorrhagic fever.
The Aedes aegypti mosquito likewise causes 200,000 cases of yellow fever a
year, resulting in 30,000 deaths, 95 percent of them in Africa.
Cuba, the only country that produces Bactivec, struck a similar deal in 2000
with Amazonas state in Brazil, which produces and sells the biolarvicide to