Addressing Disease Spread in Developing Nations: Sustainable Solutions

Series: Sciencious Medical Writing Conference


This article explores pesticide use in Egypt as a third-world country. Sustainable pesticides offer avenues for pest management that safeguarding human health by preserving ecological integrity. Derived from natural sources such as plants. 


Egypt faces significant challenges in modern times due to pesticide use. This article explores the potential health risks associated with pesticide exposure, with a particular focus on liver diseases. We examine historical accounts of agricultural hazards in ancient Egypt and contemporary scientific findings to understand the present situation and highlight the urgent need for sustainable solutions.

This article discusses sustainable pesticide formulations, including botanical extracts and nanotechnology applications. Their precise modes of action, effectiveness against pests, and compatibility with integrated pest management (IPM). 

1. Historical Perspective:

Ancient agricultural challenges are described in “The Art of Medicine in Ancient Egypt” by James P. Allen. The Nile River, which served as a lifeline for the population, was surrounded by deserts teeming with serpents and dangerous insects. In the river and irrigation canals, flies and parasites transmitted diseases that led to blindness, disability, and death. As a result of pesticide use, modern Egypt faces similar challenges.

2.  Modern Problems 

Pesticides have been linked to adverse health effects, especially liver diseases. Numerous studies have provided evidence of their potential hepatotoxicity and the associated health risks. For instance, a study conducted by Jayasumana et al. (2015) reported a higher prevalence of liver diseases, including hepatocellular carcinoma, among individuals exposed to pesticides. 

A vital organ for detoxification and metabolism, the liver is highly susceptible to pesticide toxicity. In the liver, pesticides such as organophosphates, organochlorines, and pyrethroids can impair detoxification mechanisms, interfere with cellular processes, and cause oxidative stress.

Occupational exposure to pesticides in agricultural settings, and consumption of contaminated food and water are all possible routes of exposure. Liver diseases are associated with these exposures. It underscores the importance of implementing sustainable agricultural practices to minimize pesticide-related health hazards.

3. Sustainable Solutions

Alternatives to pesticides began years ago. For example, research on the use of botanical pesticides started as early as 2004. Research on nanotechnology began before 2021. A brief overview of both fields’ research is provided below.

3.1. Various pesticides were tested for their effectiveness in repelling and killing pests. It degraded slowly and repelled pests. Vinegar mixed with water was effective as a repellent. Oils such as neem, lavender, and cottonseed were effective at killing and repelling insects. Clove oil, mint oil,

 and onion oil were also effective as repellents, but they had a moderate degradation time. Chrysanthemum liquid and orange oil had low repellent effectiveness, and they degraded quickly. It was observed that the pesticides affected the ability of bees to fly, but they did not kill the bees. This suggests that the pesticides are relatively safe for pollinators. The inability of bees to fly was attributed to the oil in the pesticides, which made their wings heavy and sticky. 

3.2. Nanotechnology has many applications in agriculture, including:

  • The nanoencapsulation of agrochemicals provides precise and controlled release mechanisms for pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers. In this way, agrochemicals are more effective, their environmental impact is reduced, and human and animal health risks are minimized.
  •  Genes, RNA, and other genetic materials can be carried by nanoparticles, enabling targeted delivery. Using this technique, we can develop genetically modified organisms (GMOs) with improved traits such as disease resistance, enhanced nutritional value, and increased sustainability

Despite nanotechnology’s potential benefits for agriculture, its environmental impact, and ethical implications need to be considered. A responsible and sustainable integration of nanotechnology in agriculture requires continuous research and development. Making it affordable also takes time and effort.


Certainly, it is possible to search for treatments for all diseases caused by pesticides, but why should we wait until these diseases can exist and spread when they can be addressed from their roots as prevention is better than cure.

Organic pesticides or even newer technologies are replacing pesticides, But more effort needs to be directed in this area. Many pharmaceutical companies search around the world for treatments for diseases, but there must also be solutions to the causes of these diseases, not just how to deal with them after they infect us.


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Connected Papers | Find and explore academic papers. (n.d.).

Wang, D., Saleh, N. B., Byro, A., Zepp, R. G., Sahle-Demessie, E., Luxton, T. P., Ho, K. T., 

       Burgess, R. M., Flury, M., White, J. C., & Su, C. (2022). Nano-enabled pesticides for 

       sustainable agriculture and global food security. Nature Nanotechnology, 17(4), 347–360.

Haneen Salman

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