kdr mutations and deltamethrin resistance in house flies in Abu Dhabi, UAE

Mohamad Hamdan, Tamilarasan Kamalanathan, Asim Iqbal, Antony Raj Gnanaprakasam, Sabu Shajahan, Mohammad Hamad Alsadeq, Amgd sayed Ali, Mohammad Ali Al-Deeb

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: The house fly, Musca domestica, is a significant carrier of diseases that can impact public health. Repeated use of pyrethroid insecticides may act as a selection pressure for mutations and amino acid substitutions in the house fly voltage-sensitive sodium channel (VSSC), which ultimately confers resistance. The objectives of this study were to determine the presence of knockdown resistance (kdr) mutations using molecular tools and to set up a CDC bottle bioassay specific for house flies in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to screen for deltamethrin resistance. Methods: Adult flies were collected from 19 locations in Abu Dhabi, UAE, and DNA was extracted, followed by PCR amplification of specific alleles (PASA) and conventional PCR using several primers to amplify regions of the VSSC gene. Sanger sequencing was performed on PCR products. We also designed primers that detect four kdr mutations using complementary DNA (cDNA) in reverse transcriptase (RT)-PCR followed by Sanger sequencing. Additionally, a CDC bottle bioassay was set up for detecting deltamethrin resistance in adult house flies. Results: In PASA, the primers successfully amplified the target bands (480, 280 and 200 bp). The kdr allele was found in flies collected from 18 of the 19 locations, at the highest and lowest prevalence of 46.9% and 9.4%, respectively. Resistant homozygous (RR) insects constituted 5.0% of the tested populations, and heterozygous (RS) insects accounted for 36.5%. The RR genotype was prevalent in house flies collected at 10 of 19 sampling locations. House fly populations were mostly in Hardy–Weinberg equilibrium, except in three locations. In addition to verifying the presence of the previously identified kdr mutation L1014F, in this study we detected two kdr mutations, L1014H and T929I, that have not previously been reported in the UAE. Also, for the first time in the UAE, a CDC bottle bioassay for deltamethrin resistance was used, which found that 60 min and 4.5 µg/ml were the diagnostic time and dose, respectively. Using this assay, we detected deltamethrin resistance in house flies from two of 16 locations, with a resistance level of 12.5%. Conclusions: Using DNA sequencing, we confirmed the presence of a known kdr mutation and uncovered two new kdr mutations in house flies from Abu Dhabi. Additionally, we detected deltamethrin resistance in these flies using a CDC bottle bioassay. Further research is recommended to comprehensively identify more kdr mutations in UAE house fly populations and assess their impacts on control strategies. Graphical Abstract: [Figure not available: see fulltext.].

Original languageEnglish
Article number47
JournalParasites and Vectors
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2024


  • CDC bottle bioassay
  • Deltamethrin
  • kdr
  • Musca domestica
  • PASA
  • Pyrethroid
  • Resistance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Parasitology
  • General Veterinary
  • Infectious Diseases


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