Identifying and testing different glues as replacement of tangle foot adhensive in black fly esperanza window traps

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Main objectives

  • To test three locally sourced glues against an imported tangle foot and human landing catches
  • To determine the performance of candidate glues in different ecological biotypes, and hence their potential for mass deployment

The outcome is expected to improve mass deployment of EWT for onchocerciasis elimination evaluations and assessments of onchocerciasis transmission dynamics.


The elimination guidelines set forth by the World Health Organization to determine whether or not Onchocerca volvulus transmission has been successfully interrupted in an endemic community rely on testing 6,000 flies in a transmission zone for infectivity using polymerase chain reaction. The gold standard method for catching these flies is human landing catch (HLC), which poses ethical issues through the use of humans as bait and poses additional logistical and technical difficulties in many settings.

Esperanza window trap (EWT) was developed for black fly collection and has the potential to collect large number of flies required to meet elimination guidelines without the accompanying ethical issues. EWT has not been validated for use to verify onchocerciasis elimination, for a number of reasons: 1. EWT varies significantly in different ecological locations and countries; 2. Tangle foot (the required glue) is extremely difficult to source and transport.

By undertaking fly catches using a variety of glues and processing the flies by PCR this study aims to determine if locally available glues can be successfully substituted for tanglefoot and if flies caught via this mechanism can be successfully processed by PCR for determination of elimination status.

Study details
Start date
May 2021
Finish date
August 2022
Main contact
Ruth Dixon
Research Adviser
  • Osun State University, Osogbo, Nigeria
  • Federal Ministry of Health, Abuja, Nigeria