Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Vacation and mini-researching

So its vacation again. Actually about two weeks into vacation. I have been thinking what to do this vacation and still couldn't decide between hundreds of my hobbies. There is my Benz that needs tinkering and modifications and not to mention gardening and cooking and going for sports practices. Cleaning room! It is taking me forever to do that and it never gets cleaned. Besides I have to complete our report of the mini research project we(13 of us) did for Ecology component of Zoology this semester. As usual we did posters to present the methodologies and results to the lecturers but we also have to make this report to give to the director of MRI, as they helped us with our work.

It isn't a big and original research. Just a mini- research and we did have to reduce our time on it due to the shortening of the semester after the academic strike.

Anyway I wrote the abstract and thought some of you might like to read it, maybe, and give critics and suggestions. It is my/our first ever serious report writing and first time I'm writing an abstract. We usually write introduction for the lab reports and no abstracts. So here goes!

Survey and abundance of mosquitoes in Science Faculty premises and prevalence in dengue patients among Science Faculty students

Dengue Fever is a mosquito-borne viral infection endemic in the tropical and sub-tropical regions. In Sri Lanka Dengue usually occurs as epidemics following monsoon seasons. According to data from epidemiology unit of Sri Lanka, the number of total cases recorded for year 2009 is 32713. The most affected district was Kandy. Colombo, Gampaha and Kaluthara districts which have been susceptible in the past have also recorded a high rate of infection and deaths.In recent past many cases of Dengue have been reported among University of Colombo Student body and Academic and Non-academic staff. There are many possible sites where Ades mosquitoes could have bred and infected university students.The mini research was planned to identify the Ades mosquito breeding sites within faculty of Science, University of Colombo and to identify whether Dengue infection cases among Science faculty students are due to the Ades mosquito population within university premises.
With the help of Medical Research Institute we managed to learn the methodologies to capture adult and larvae , identify the major species associated with major mosquito borne diseases within the first week of the research period. Then mosquito breeding sites within the faculty premises were identified and samples were taken and species were identified. Density of larvae was calculated for each micro habitat and Breeding Index of the site was calculated. A questionnaire was prepared and distributed to collect data regarding the infections of Dengue and other major mosquito borne diseases, frequency and duration of their presence within the faculty premises and the places where they are most vulnerable to mosquito bites. A statistical analysis of the data from the questionnaire and the breeding sites was done and results were compared to see whether there is a positive correlation between faculty bred Ades mosquito population and Dengue cases among students.
A reference site was prepared to identify the more preferred conditions for mosquitoes to breed.At the end 6 posters were made to present the research methodology and results.

It was identified that the areas with most mosquito bites received by dengue infected students and the points where micro habitats with Ades mosquitoes were identified overlapped for a certain degree which showed a high probability of those students being bitten by the Ades mosquitoes originated from these places. Furthermore the time duration the students spent did not have a direct relationship with the probability of being infected as the data analysis showed that the most dengue infected students stayed at university a medium duration. By comparison of all data analysed and the findings we inferred that there could be a positive impact from Ades population in Science faculty premises towards the Dengue infections among students.
However it cannot be said that these infections were solely due to the Dengue population within the faculty premises as the students might have spent more time in other faculties of the university, other places around university and come from different parts of the country with different probabilities to get infected at home with Dengue. And the results cannot be said entirely accurate since the comparison was carried out between ares infected students were bitten more by mosquitoes and density of mosquitoes at breeding points. The mosquito niche can be as large as few kilometers of diameter so we cannot exactly say students who lingered near those mosquito breeding points were bitten by the mosquitoes bred at those points only.

Hope you enjoyed! Don't forget to put suggestions and critics. They are always welcome.

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