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General Information

  • Temefos or Temephos (trade name Abate) is an organophosphate larvicide used to treat water infested with disease-carrying insects including mosquitoes, midges, and black fly larvae.
  • Temephos (Abate) is an Organo-phosphorus compound. Its chemical formula is 0,0,0,0-tetra Methyl 0,0-thio-dephenyle phosphorothioate.
  • Temephos is a white, crystalline solid in its pure form. The technical grade is a brown viscous liquid.
  • It is considered an important management tool for mosquito control programmes, being used to help prevent development of resistance to the bacterial larvicides.


  • Temephos is also used in the Guinea Worm Eradication program to kill water fleas that carry guinea worm larvae.
  • It is used in lakes, ponds and wetlands.
  • It also may be used to control fleas on dogs and cats and to control lice on humans.
  • Temephos is also used experimentally on cotton, alfalfa, citrus and other crops for control of cutworms, thrips on citrus and Lygus bugs.
  • Temephos can be safely used in drinking water as it has a low mammalian toxicity.
  • Temephos is a larvacide which effectively controls the vectors of human diseases such as Malaria, Onchocerciasis, Epidemic Typhus Fever, Filariasis, Dracunculiasis, Yellow Fever, Dengue and various other arbovirus diseases.


  • This is the only organophosphate pesticide registered with the EPA for larvicidal use in the USA.
  • Annual usage is approximately 25,000 to 40,000 pounds of active ingredient per year.
  • Temephos was first registered in the United States in 1965 by American Cyanamid Company for a number of uses including citrus fruits, pet collars, and mosquito control.
  • Temephos is recommended by WHO for addition to potable water as larvicide treatment at an application rate not exceeding 1 mg/l.
  • The level of temephos resistance was detected in a microplate by biochemical assay using WHO bioassay technique.
  • Resistance to temephos by A. aegypti has been seen in Brazil. The Brazilian Aedes aegypti resistance monitoring program detected temephos resistance in A. aegypti populations from several localities in the country.

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