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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: SURVEILLANCE AND ECOLOGY OF MOSQUITO, BITING AND FILTH BREEDING INSECTS

Location: Mosquito and Fly Research Unit

Title: Laboratory Evaluation of Mosquito “Bite Protection” from Permethrin-Treated U.S. Marine Corps and U.S. Army Uniforms

Authors
item Bernier, Ulrich
item Perry, Melynda - NATICK SOLDIER CENTER

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: February 12, 2009
Publication Date: N/A

Technical Abstract: The “Bite Protection” laboratory assay was developed originally to assess the efficacy of permethrin-treated Marine Corps Combat Utility Uniforms (MCCUUs). The efficacy is determined by a protocol that measures the ability of mosquitoes to bite through uniforms at initial treatment and after specified laundering increments. This protocol was used in 2006-2007 to qualify vendors that supply MCCUUs treated with permethrin repellent at the factory level. The U.S. Marine Corps is the only US Military service that has transitioned away from field treatment of uniforms to factory-produced repellent-treated uniforms only. The U.S. Army now stocks fire-resistant army combat uniforms (FRACUs) and several other uniform types that employ fire resistant material. These compositional and structural changes to the fabric have had a significant impact upon the uniforms ability to retain permethrin and to its ability to prevent bites from mosquitoes. At present, field treatment of FRACUs is not recommended and therefore, factory treatment of uniforms is under exploration as a solution. This presentation will cover our findings on the bite protection levels of permethrin-treated USMC and US Army uniforms. Fabrics included in this study include current constructions and compositions as well as experimental FRACU constructions. These experimental uniforms have been tested to determine if a compromise can be achieved between mosquito bite protection and uniform air permeability, a factor in comfort.

Last Modified: 9/1/2014