Research topic

Valorization of Sextonia rubra wood waste extracts for the formulation of larvicidal products against Aedes aegypti mosquitoes: effectiveness and selectivity.

Funding and period

European Regional Development Fund Operational Programme (PO-FEDER), 2017-2022

Projet leader

Emeline HOUËL


The French Guiana forest industry generates large volumes of waste (more than 50% of the wood material lost between tree felling and sawing), which is currently only converted into biomass for energy. However, the biomolecules derived from wood have properties that can be valorized in a much broader way. In particular, the species already widely exploited, such as Sextonia rubra (known in French Guiana as « grignon franc »), present a significant potential, with the perspective of developping applications in high value-added sectors.

Moreover, French Guiana has been facing for years an upsurge of epidemics (dengue, chikungunya, and more recently zika), all these diseases caused by viruses transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito. Until now, the best line of defense has been vector control. However, one of the consequences of the massive use of insecticides is an increasing resistance of the mosquito populations. The question of the impact of the products used on the environment and the population is also crucial. Thus, the search for effective and ecologically sustainable alternatives is fundamental in a constantly changing epidemiological and regulatory context.

In the aim to develop solutions from endogenous bioresources, as well as to respond to the challenges of a circular economy, the SextoniAEDES project aims to deepen knowledge on the larvicidal activity of the wood extract of Sextonia rubra, identified as active against Ae. aegypti larvae in a previous project (FEDER Insecticides, 2011-2015, Patent FR N° 14 58946 / WO 2016/046489). The data obtained (larvicidal activity of formulations based on wood extract, eco- and cytotoxicity of products, quality and certification of both ressource and biological activity, technical and economic feasibility study) will contribute to a rational use of the resource, participating in structuring the development and innovation in French Guiana.

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