bims-mosdis Biomed News
on Mosquito distribution and disease
Issue of 2020‒08‒16
twenty-five papers selected by
Richard Halfpenny
Staffordshire University


  1. Sci Rep. 2020 Aug 14. 10(1): 13847
    Straub TJ, Shaw WR, Marcenac P, Sawadogo SP, Dabiré RK, Diabaté A, Catteruccia F, Neafsey DE.
      Wolbachia, an endosymbiotic alpha-proteobacterium commonly found in insects, can inhibit the transmission of human pathogens by mosquitoes. Biocontrol programs are underway using Aedes aegypti mosquitoes trans-infected with a non-natural Wolbachia strain to reduce dengue virus transmission. Less is known about the impact of Wolbachia on the biology and vectorial capacity of Anopheles mosquitoes, the vectors of malaria parasites. A naturally occurring strain of Wolbachia, wAnga, infects populations of the major malaria vectors Anopheles gambiae and Anopheles coluzzii in Burkina Faso. Previous studies found wAnga infection was negatively correlated with Plasmodium infection in the mosquito and wAnga influenced mosquito egg-laying behavior. Here, we investigate wAnga in natural populations of An. coluzzii and its interactions with other resident microbiota using targeted 16S sequencing. Though we find no major differences in microbiota composition associated with wAnga infection, we do find several taxa that correlate with the presence or absence of wAnga in female mosquitoes following oviposition, with the caveat that we could not rule out batch effects due to the unanticipated impact of wAnga on oviposition timing. These data suggest wAnga may influence or interact with the Anopheles microbiota, which may contribute to the impact of wAnga on Anopheles biology and vectorial capacity.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-70745-0
  2. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2020 Aug 14. 14(8): e0008605
    Ghosh SK, Podder D, Panja AK, Mukherjee S.
      In human communities inhabiting areas-such as West Bengal- India-where perpetuate the pre-imago & adult developmental stages of mosquitoes; many infectious diseases are still diagnosed such as Dengue, Malaria and Acute Encephalitis Syndrome. The control of the aquatic developmental stages is one of the easiest way to prevent the emergence of adults-the blood feeding adult females being thus prevented to sample their blood meal and to lay their eggs in the aquatic milieu where develop the aquatic pre-imaginal developmental stages. Moreover, reducing the adult population size also the probability of for the blood feeding adult female mosquitoes to act as hosts and vectors of the arboviruses such as dengue virus & Japanese encephalitis virus as well as of Plasmodium. Several environmental factors including water quality parameters are responsible for the selection of oviposition sites by the female mosquitoes. In our study, larval densities of three important mosquitoes (Aedes/A. albopictus, Anopheles/An. stephensi and Culex/C. vishnui) were measured and water qualities of their habitat i.e. pH, Specific Conductance, Dissolved Oxygen, Chemical Oxygen Demand, Total alkalinity (Talk), Hardness, Nitrate nitrogen and Ammonia nitrogen were analyzed in2017 and 2018 in many districts of West Bengal where humans beings are suffering from arboviruses and /or malaria. Whereas we have found positive correlation of density of C. vishnui and A. albopictus with the water factors except Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD) and Talk for An. stephensi all these factors except pH, COD and Talk have positive correlation. Hardness of the water shows positive correlation with the density of An. stephensi and C. vishnui but negative correlation with density of A. albopictus. Contour plot analysis demonstrates that occurrence of each mosquito species lies in between specific range of water factors. Inter- correlation analysis revealed that mosquitoes were negatively correlated with each other. A positive correlation of the water quality parameters and larval density, over two successive years, was also noticed. In conclusion, the increasing level of pollution due to industrial and other irresponsible waste management system which changes the water quality parameters may also influence mosquito population.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pntd.0008605
  3. PLoS One. 2020 ;15(8): e0237353
    Sukkanon C, Nararak J, Bangs MJ, Hii J, Chareonviriyaphap T.
      Airborne spatial repellency (SR) is characterized and distinguished from other chemical actions including contact locomotor excitation and toxicity. The use of volatile spatial repellents is a potential new intervention class for combatting mosquito-borne pathogen transmission; therefore, continuing investigations on the actions of these chemicals that modify mosquito host-seeking behavior (i.e., bite prevention) is needed. The objective of this study is to characterize the key behavioral avoidance actions of transfluthrin (TFT) to advance spatial repellent development into practical products. Behavioral avoidance responses were observed for adult laboratory strains of Aedes aegypti, Anopheles minimus and An. dirus, and two field populations of An. harrisoni and Ae. aegypti, respectively. Established TFT sublethal (LC50 and LC75), lethal concentrations (LC99) and discriminating concentrations (DCs) were selected corresponding to each mosquito test species. Spatial repellency and contact excitation ('irritancy') responses on adult mosquitoes to TFT were assessed using an excito-repellency assay system. At LC50, TFT exhibited strong avoidance with An. minimus (60.1% escape) and An. dirus (80% escape) laboratory strains, showing between 12 and 16x greater escape response than Ae. aegypti (5% escape). Repellency responses for field collected Ae. aegypti and An. harrisoni were 54.9 and 47.1% escape, respectively. After adjusting the initial contact escape response (a measure of combined irritancy and repellency) to estimate only escape due to contact, the LC50 and LC99 showed moderate escape irritancy with laboratory Ae. aegypti (41.4% escape) and no contact activity against the field population. Adjustment showed only weak contact activity (16.1% escape) in laboratory An. minimus at LC50. Spatial repellency is the predominant mode of action of TFT among colonized and field mosquitoes used in this study. Established baseline (susceptible) dose-response curves assist in optimizing SR products for mosquito control and pathogen transmission prevention.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0237353
  4. Parasit Vectors. 2020 Aug 10. 13(1): 407
    Fernando HSD, Saavedra-Rodriguez K, Perera R, Black WC, De Silva BGDNK.
      BACKGROUND: Drastic increases of dengue fever (DF) over the past few years have prompted studies on the development of resistance to insecticides in the mosquito vector, Aedes aegypti (Linnaeus). In Sri Lanka control of the vector population is essentially achieved using larvicides (temephos) and adulticides (principally pyrethroids). The present study investigates resistance to commonly used insecticides and underlying mechanisms of Ae. aegypti in selected sites in Sri Lanka.METHODS: In this study, susceptibility to three commonly used adulticides (malathion, permethrin and deltamethrin) and the larvicide temephos were tested for Ae. aegypti sampled from five localities in Sri Lanka using WHO dose diagnostics tests. In addition, we performed dose-response tests for permethrin to determine lethal concentrations (LCs) with CDC bottle bioassays. An assessment of the activity of metabolic detoxifying enzymes (multifunction oxidases (MFOs), glutathione S-transferases (GSTs) and esterases) and determination of frequency of the kdr mutations (F1534C, V1016G and S989P) were also carried out to ascertain the associated resistance mechanisms. Kdr genotype frequencies were compared with samples collected from the same sites in 2015 to determine the change of allele frequencies over the years.
    RESULTS: The present study revealed resistance in all Ae. aegypti populations studied, with low mortality percentages for both permethrin (10-89%) and deltamethrin (40-92%). Dose response tests revealed highest resistance ratios (RR) for permethrin and temephos from Colombo district whereas Puttalum district exhibited the lowest. High frequencies of the 1534C allele (0.052-0.802) were found in the study sites in 2017. Comparison with samples collected in 2015 revealed a substantial increase in this allele. The activity of MFOs and p-nitro phenyl-acetate esterase was significantly greater in most Sri Lankan populations in comparison to that of the New Orleans (NO) susceptible strain. In contrast, the activity of α-esterase and β-esterase was similar or lower than that in the NO strain.
    CONCLUSIONS: Aedes aegypti from Sri Lanka is resistant to pyrethroid insecticides showing rapid selection for kdr mutations and varying metabolic mechanisms. Continued monitoring of vector populations is crucial to mitigate the development of resistance to commonly used insecticides and in turn, controlling the vector population.
    Keywords:  Aedes aegypti; Insecticide resistance; Metabolic resistance; Pyrethroid; Sri Lanka; Temephos; kdr
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1186/s13071-020-04284-y
  5. J Med Entomol. 2020 Aug 11. pii: tjaa128. [Epub ahead of print]
    Alarcón-Elbal PM, Rodríguez-Sosa MA, Newman BC, Sutton WB.
      Aedes vittatus Bigot is distributed throughout Africa, tropical Asia, and southern Europe and occurs in sylvatic as well as peridomestic environments where it readily feeds on humans. Although the vectorial capacity of Ae. vittatus is not well understood, this species is known to play a role in the maintenance and transmission of yellow fever, Zika, chikungunya, and dengue virus within its native range. In October 2019, after a routine inspection of mosquito-breeding containers in Jarabacoa, Dominican Republic, two Ae. vittatus females were captured via human landing catch method. After this finding, a CDC miniature light trap was deployed at the point of initial detection from 18:00 to 08:00 h, 2 d/wk from 3 to 31 October 2019. Potential larval habitats were also sampled via traditional dip method once per week spanning a 150 m radius from point of initial detection. In addition to the 2 adult females, 10 female and 2 male Ae. vittatus were captured. One Ae. vittatus larva also was found in a small puddle formed by an animal hoof print. Conventional PCR and Sanger sequencing were used to confirm morphological identification of collected specimens. This is the first detection of Ae. vittatus in the Dominican Republic as well as the Americas. Therefore, enhanced surveillance is needed to better understand the range and public health risks this potential invasive mosquito species may pose in the Dominican Republic, other Caribbean Islands, and/or the Americas.
    Keywords:   Aedes vittatus ; Hispaniola; entomological survey; invasive mosquito species; mosquito-borne diseases
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1093/jme/tjaa128
  6. BMC Genomics. 2020 Aug 07. 21(1): 547
    Gomulski LM, Manni M, Carraretto D, Nolan T, Lawson D, Ribeiro JM, Malacrida AR, Gasperi G.
      BACKGROUND: The Asian tiger mosquito, Aedes albopictus, is a highly dangerous invasive vector of numerous medically important arboviruses including dengue, chikungunya and Zika. In four decades it has spread from tropical Southeast Asia to many parts of the world in both tropical and temperate climes. The rapid invasion process of this mosquito is supported by its high ecological and genetic plasticity across different life history traits. Our aim was to investigate whether wild populations, both native and adventive, also display transcriptional genetic variability for functions that may impact their biology, behaviour and ability to transmit arboviruses, such as sensory perception.RESULTS: Antennal transcriptome data were derived from mosquitoes from a native population from Ban Rai, Thailand and from three adventive Mediterranean populations: Athens, Greece and Arco and Trento from Italy. Clear inter-population differential transcriptional activity was observed in different gene categories related to sound perception, olfaction and viral infection. The greatest differences were detected between the native Thai and the Mediterranean populations. The two Italian populations were the most similar. Nearly one million quality filtered SNP loci were identified.
    CONCLUSION: The ability to express this great inter-population transcriptional variability highlights, at the functional level, the remarkable genetic flexibility of this mosquito species. We can hypothesize that the differential expression of genes, including those involved in sensory perception, in different populations may enable Ae. albopictus to exploit different environments and hosts, thus contributing to its status as a global vector of arboviruses of public health importance. The large number of SNP loci present in these transcripts represents a useful addition to the arsenal of high-resolution molecular markers and a resource that can be used to detect selective pressure and adaptive changes that may have occurred during the colonization process.
    Keywords:  Asian tiger mosquito; Chemoreception; Differential transcription; Invasive species; Single nucleotide polymorphisms
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1186/s12864-020-06956-6
  7. Parasit Vectors. 2020 Aug 12. 13(1): 413
    Chapman GE, Sherlock K, Hesson JC, Blagrove MSC, Lycett GJ, Archer D, Solomon T, Baylis M.
      BACKGROUND: There has been no evidence of transmission of mosquito-borne arboviruses of equine or human health concern to date in the UK. However, in recent years there have been a number of outbreaks of viral diseases spread by vectors in Europe. These events, in conjunction with increasing rates of globalisation and climate change, have led to concern over the future risk of mosquito-borne viral disease outbreaks in northern Europe and have highlighted the importance of being prepared for potential disease outbreaks. Here we assess several UK mosquito species for their potential to transmit arboviruses important for both equine and human health, as measured by the presence of viral RNA in saliva at different time points after taking an infective blood meal.RESULTS: The following wild-caught British mosquitoes were evaluated for their potential as vectors of zoonotic equine arboviruses: Ochlerotatus detritus for Venezuelan equine encephalitis virus (VEEV) and Ross River virus (RRV), and Culiseta annulata and Culex pipiens for Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV). Production of RNA in saliva was demonstrated at varying efficiencies for all mosquito-virus pairs. Ochlerotatus detritus was more permissive for production of RRV RNA in saliva than VEEV RNA. For RRV, 27.3% of mosquitoes expectorated viral RNA at 7 days post-infection when incubated at 21 °C and 50% at 24 °C. Strikingly, 72% of Cx. pipiens produced JEV RNA in saliva after 21 days at 18 °C. For some mosquito-virus pairs, infection and salivary RNA titres reduced over time, suggesting unstable infection dynamics.
    CONCLUSIONS: This study adds to the number of Palaearctic mosquito species that demonstrate expectoration of viral RNA, for arboviruses of importance to human and equine health. This work adds to evidence that native mosquito species should be investigated further for their potential to vector zoonotic mosquito-borne arboviral disease of equines in northern Europe. The evidence that Cx. pipiens is potentially an efficient laboratory vector of JEV at temperatures as low as 18 °C warrants further investigation, as this mosquito is abundant in cooler regions of Europe and is considered an important vector for West Nile Virus, which has a comparable transmission ecology.
    Keywords:  Aedes; Arbovirus; Culex; Culiseta; JEV; Mosquito; Ochlerotatus; RRV; VEEV; Vector competence
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1186/s13071-020-04285-x
  8. Sci Rep. 2020 Aug 12. 10(1): 13642
    Resck MEB, Padilha KP, Cupolillo AP, Talyuli OAC, Ferreira-de-Brito A, Lourenço-de-Oliveira R, Farnesi LC, Bruno RV.
      Chikungunya and Zika are arboviruses transmitted by the mosquito Aedes aegypti. Mosquito fecundity and egg viability are important parameters of vectorial capacity. Here we aim to understand, comparatively, the effects of Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) and Zika virus (ZIKV) infections on the fecundity and fertility of young and old Aedes aegypti females. Using artificial infection blood feeding experiments we observed that both CHIKV and ZIKV do not alter the number of eggs laid when compared to uninfected females, although the egg fertility significantly decreases in both young and old CHIKV-infected females. There is an upward trend of null females (infertile females) from 2.1% in young to 6.8% in old ZIKV-infected females. Together, our data revealed that CHIKV and ZIKV affects differently Ae. aegypti physiology, that may be related to different viral spread in nature.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-70367-6
  9. Emerg Microbes Infect. 2020 Aug 12. 1-25
    Selhorst P, Makiala-Mandanda S, Smet B, Mariën J, Anthony C, Binene-Mbuka G, Weggheleire A, Ilombe G, Kinganda-Lusamaki E, Pukuta-Simbu E, Lubula L, Mbala-Kingebeni P, Nkuba-Ndaye A, Vogt F, Watsenga F, Bortel WV, Vanlerberghe V, Ariën KK, Ahuka-Mundeke S.
      Early 2019, a chikungunya virus (CHIKV) outbreak hit the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Though seldomly deadly, this mosquito-borne disease presents as an acute febrile (poly)arthralgia often followed by long-term sequelae. Although Aedes aegypti is the primary vector, an amino acid substitution in the viral envelope gene E1 (A226V) is causing concern as it results in increased transmission by Aedes albopictus, a mosquito with a much wider geographical distribution. Between January and March 2019, we collected human and mosquito samples in Kinshasa and Kongo Central province (Kasangulu and Matadi). Of the patients that were tested within 7 days of symptom onset, 49.7% (87/175) were RT-PCR positive, while in the mosquito samples CHIKV was found in 1/2 pools in Kinshasa, 5/6 pools in Kasangulu, and 8/26 pools in Matadi. Phylogenetic analysis on whole genome sequences showed that the circulating strain formed a monophyletic group within the ECSA2 lineage and harboured the A226V mutation. Our sequences did not cluster with sequences from previously reported outbreaks in the DRC nor with other known A226V-containing ECSA2 strains. This indicates a scenario of convergent evolution where A226V was acquired independently in response to a similar selection pressure for transmission by Ae. albopictus. This is in line with our entomological data where we detected Ae. albopictus more frequently than Ae. aegypti in two out of three affected areas. In conclusion, our findings suggest that CHIKV is adapting to the increased presence of Aedes albopictus in DRC.
    Keywords:   Aedes albopictus ; A226V; CHIKV; Chikungunya; DRC; Democratic Republic of the Congo; I211T; outbreak
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1080/22221751.2020.1810135
  10. Parasit Vectors. 2020 Aug 13. 13(1): 417
    Xia S, Cosme LV, Lutomiah J, Sang R, Ngangue MF, Rahola N, Ayala D, Powell JR.
      BACKGROUND: The mosquito Aedes aegypti is a devastating disease vector transmitting several important human arboviral diseases. In its native range in Africa, the mosquito can be found in both the ancestral forest habitat and anthropogenic habitats such as villages. How do the different habitats impact the population genetic structure of the local mosquito populations?METHODS: To address this question, we simultaneously sampled Ae. aegypti from the forest and local villages in La Lopé, Gabon and Rabai, Kenya. The mosquitoes were genotyped at 12 microsatellite loci and a panel of ~25,000 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), which allowed us to estimate their genetic ancestries and the population genetic structure related to habitats and sampling sites.
    RESULTS: In the context of the global population genetic structure of Ae. aegypti, clustering analysis showed that mosquitoes from the same locality (La Lopé or Rabai) have similar genetic ancestry, regardless of their habitats. Further analysis at the local scale also found no strong genetic differentiation between the forest and village mosquitoes in both La Lopé and Rabai. Interestingly, these results from our 2017 samples from Rabai, Kenya contrast to the documentation of genetic differentiation between village and forest mosquito collections from 1975-1976 and 2009. Between-habitat measures of genetic difference (Fst) vary across the genome, with a peak of high divergence observed at the third chromosome only in the La Lopé populations.
    CONCLUSION: Collectively, these results demonstrated that there is little genetic isolation between forest and village habitats, which suggests possible extensive gene flow between them. From an epidemiological perspective, the forest habitat could act as a refuge for mosquitoes against vector control programmes in the domestic settings. Moreover, sylvatic populations could play a role in zoonotic pathogen transferred to humans. Therefore, future studies on disease transmission and vector control planning in the study area should take natural populations into consideration.
    Keywords:  Aedes aegypti; Africa; Domestication; Forest and domestic habitat; Population genetic structure
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1186/s13071-020-04278-w
  11. Parasit Vectors. 2020 Aug 12. 13(1): 414
    Wong ML, Liew JWK, Wong WK, Pramasivan S, Mohamed Hassan N, Wan Sulaiman WY, Jeyaprakasam NK, Leong CS, Low VL, Vythilingam I.
      BACKGROUND: The endosymbiont bacterium Wolbachia is maternally inherited and naturally infects some filarial nematodes and a diverse range of arthropods, including mosquito vectors responsible for disease transmission in humans. Previously, it has been found infecting most mosquito species but absent in Anopheles and Aedes aegypti. However, recently these two mosquito species were found to be naturally infected with Wolbachia. We report here the extent of Wolbachia infections in field-collected mosquitoes from Malaysia based on PCR amplification of the Wolbachia wsp and 16S rRNA genes.METHODS: The prevalence of Wolbachia in Culicinae mosquitoes was assessed via PCR with wsp primers. For some of the mosquitoes, in which the wsp primers failed to amplify a product, Wolbachia screening was performed using nested PCR targeting the 16S rRNA gene. Wolbachia sequences were aligned using Geneious 9.1.6 software, analyzed with BLAST, and the most similar sequences were downloaded. Phylogenetic analyses were carried out with MEGA 7.0 software. Graphs were drawn with GraphPad Prism 8.0 software.
    RESULTS: A total of 217 adult mosquitoes representing 26 mosquito species were screened. Of these, infections with Wolbachia were detected in 4 and 15 mosquito species using wsp and 16S rRNA primers, respectively. To our knowledge, this is the first time Wolbachia was detected using 16S rRNA gene amplification, in some Anopheles species (some infected with Plasmodium), Culex sinensis, Culex vishnui, Culex pseudovishnui, Mansonia bonneae and Mansonia annulifera. Phylogenetic analysis based on wsp revealed Wolbachia from most of the mosquitoes belonged to Wolbachia Supergroup B. Based on 16S rRNA phylogenetic analysis, the Wolbachia strain from Anopheles mosquitoes were more closely related to Wolbachia infecting Anopheles from Africa than from Myanmar.
    CONCLUSIONS: Wolbachia was found infecting Anopheles and other important disease vectors such as Mansonia. Since Wolbachia can affect its host by reducing the life span and provide resistance to pathogen infection, several studies have suggested it as a potential innovative tool for vector/vector-borne disease control. Therefore, it is important to carry out further studies on natural Wolbachia infection in vector mosquitoes' populations as well as their long-term effects in new hosts and pathogen suppression.
    Keywords:  16S rRNA; Anopheles; Mosquitoes; Vectors; Wolbachia; wsp gene
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1186/s13071-020-04277-x
  12. J Med Entomol. 2020 Aug 12. pii: tjaa135. [Epub ahead of print]
    Pedrosa MC, Borges MAZ, Eiras ÁE, Caldas S, Cecílio AB, Brito MF, Ribeiro SP.
      We provide the first evidence of a recent invasion of Aedes aegypti (Linnaeus in Hasselquist, 1762) and Aedes albopictus (Skuse 1894), followed by dengue virus, in tropical montane cities in south-eastern Brazil, Mariana, and Ouro Preto, at mid and high altitudes, respectively. Long-term temperature variation, dengue public data, and sampling of immature and adult mosquitoes (ovitraps and mosquitraps) in contrasting habitats were used to explain the distribution of Aedes in what in these two cities. From 1961 to 2014, the annual temperature increased significantly due to increases in winter temperatures. In the 1990s/2000s, the winter temperature was 1.3°C warmer than in the 1960s, when it varied from 21.2 to 18.9°C. After 2007, the winter temperatures increased and ranged from 21.6 to 21.3°C. The first autochthonous dengue cases in Mariana and Ouro Preto were in 2007, followed by few occurrences until in 2012, when the mean numbers increased three-fold, and peak at 2013. The continuous 'warmer winter' may have trigged the Aedes invasion. Aedes species benefited from higher winter temperatures, which was an important driver of their invasion of the state of Minas Gerais in the 1980s and, more recently, in the remaining montane urban habitats in this region. In both 2009 and 2011, we found more Aedes in Mariana than Ouro Preto, and more Ae. albopictus in green areas and Ae. aegypti in houses, the expected pattern for well-established populations.
    Keywords:  arboviruses; global warming; insect vectors; urban ecology; urban entomology
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1093/jme/tjaa135
  13. PLoS Comput Biol. 2020 Aug 14. 16(8): e1008121
    Selvaraj P, Wenger EA, Bridenbecker D, Windbichler N, Russell JR, Gerardin J, Bever CA, Nikolov M.
      Vector control has been a key component in the fight against malaria for decades, and chemical insecticides are critical to the success of vector control programs worldwide. However, increasing resistance to insecticides threatens to undermine these efforts. Understanding the evolution and propagation of resistance is thus imperative to mitigating loss of intervention effectiveness. Additionally, accelerated research and development of new tools that can be deployed alongside existing vector control strategies is key to eradicating malaria in the near future. Methods such as gene drives that aim to genetically modify large mosquito populations in the wild to either render them refractory to malaria or impair their reproduction may prove invaluable tools. Mathematical models of gene flow in populations, which is the transfer of genetic information from one population to another through migration, can offer invaluable insight into the behavior and potential impact of gene drives as well as the spread of insecticide resistance in the wild. Here, we present the first multi-locus, agent-based model of vector genetics that accounts for mutations and a many-to-many mapping cardinality of genotypes to phenotypes to investigate gene flow, and the propagation of gene drives in Anopheline populations. This model is embedded within a large scale individual-based model of malaria transmission representative of a high burden, high transmission setting characteristic of the Sahel. Results are presented for the selection of insecticide-resistant vectors and the spread of resistance through repeated deployment of insecticide treated nets (ITNs), in addition to scenarios where gene drives act in concert with existing vector control tools such as ITNs. The roles of seasonality, spatial distribution of vector habitat and feed sites, and existing vector control in propagating alleles that confer phenotypic traits via gene drives that result in reduced transmission are explored. The ability to model a spectrum of vector species with different genotypes and phenotypes in the context of malaria transmission allows us to test deployment strategies for existing interventions that reduce the deleterious effects of resistance and allows exploration of the impact of new tools being proposed or developed.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pcbi.1008121
  14. Parasit Vectors. 2020 Aug 12. 13(1): 412
    Krajacich BJ, Sullivan M, Faiman R, Veru L, Graber L, Lehmann T.
      BACKGROUND: How anopheline mosquitoes persist through the long dry season in Africa remains a gap in our understanding of these malaria vectors. To span this period in locations such as the Sahelian zone of Mali, mosquitoes must either migrate to areas of permanent water, recolonize areas as they again become favorable, or survive in harsh conditions including high temperatures, low humidity, and an absence of surface water (required for breeding). Adult mosquitoes surviving through this season must dramatically extend their typical lifespan (averaging 2-3 weeks) to 7 months. Previous work has found evidence that the malaria mosquito An. coluzzii, survives over 200 days in the wild between rainy seasons in a presumed state of aestivation (hibernation), but this state has so far not been replicated in laboratory conditions. The inability to recapitulate aestivation in the lab hinders addressing key questions such as how this state is induced, how it affects malaria vector competence, and its impact on disease transmission.METHODS: In effort to induce aestivation, we held laboratory mosquitoes in climate-controlled incubators with a range of conditions that adjusted humidity (40-85% RH), temperature (18-27 °C), and light conditions (8-12 h of light) and evaluated their survivorship. These conditions were chosen to mimic the late rainy and dry seasons as well as relevant extremes these mosquitoes may experience during aestivation.
    RESULTS: We found that by priming mosquitoes in conditions simulating the late wet season in Mali, and maintaining mosquitoes in reduced light/temperature, mean mosquito survival increased from 18.34 ± 0.65 to 48.02 ± 2.87 days, median survival increased from 19 (95% CI 17-21) to 50 days (95% CI 40-58), and the maximum longevity increased from 38 to 109 days (P-adj < 0.001). While this increase falls short of the 200 + day survival seen in field mosquitoes, this extension is substantially higher than previously found through environmental or dietary modulation and is hard to reconcile with states other than aestivation. This finding will provide a platform for future characterization of this state, and allow for comparison to field collected samples.
    Keywords:  Aestivation; Anopheles; Dry season; Malaria
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1186/s13071-020-04276-y
  15. Curr Opin Insect Sci. 2020 Jul 24. pii: S2214-5745(20)30060-2. [Epub ahead of print]40 111-116
    Shen D, Nyawira KT, Xia A.
      Mosquitoes are a major threat to human health globally because they transmit infectious diseases, such as malaria, lymphatic filariasis, and arboviruses. The conventional mosquito control efforts, based on synthetic insecticides, have been compromised owing to the eventual development of insecticide resistance and the adverse environmental impacts of insecticides. Alternative eco-friendly approaches using entomopathogenic fungi to alleviate vector-borne disease burden have gained an increasing interest because of their selective specificity and environmental safety. Existing literature revealed an enormous potential of microbial agents for the biocontrol of mosquitoes. With the advances in genetic recombination and transformation techniques, genetically engineered fungal biopesticides showed promising efficacy against insecticide-resistant mosquitoes. In this article, we elaborate on the important mosquito fungal and oomycota pathogens as potential biocontrol agents and infection mechanism through oral ingestion. Recent advances on the secreted effectors for suppression of host immunity and progress on the development of transgenic mosquito-killing fungi were discussed.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cois.2020.05.003
  16. BMC Res Notes. 2020 Aug 10. 13(1): 378
    Ghahvechi Khaligh F, Vahedi M, Chavshin AR.
      OBJECTIVE: The potential use of symbiotic bacteria for the control of mosquito-borne diseases has attracted the attention of scientists over the past few years. Culiseta longiareolata is among the medically important mosquitoes that transmit a wide range of vector-borne diseases worldwide. However, no extensive studies have been done on the identification of its symbiotic bacteria. Given the role of this species in the transmission of some important diseases and its widespread presence in different parts of the world, including northwestern parts and the West Azerbaijan Province in Iran, a knowledge about the symbiotic bacteria of this species may provide a valuable tool for the biological control of this mosquito. Accordingly, the present study was conducted to isolate and identify the cultivable isolates bacterial symbionts of Culiseta longiareolata using 16S rRNA fragment analysis.RESULTS: The midguts of 42 specimens of Cs. longiareolata were dissected, and the bacteria were cultured on agar plates. After the purification of the bacterial colonies, 16srRNA region amplification and gene sequence analysis were performed, and the sequences were confirmed by biochemical methods. In the present study, 21 isolates belonging to the genera Acinetobacter, Aerococcus, Aeromonas, Bacillus, Carnobacterium, Klebsiella, Morganella, Pseudomonas, Shewanella and Staphylococcus were identified.
    Keywords:  16S rRNA; Mosquitoes; Paratransgenesis; Symbionts
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1186/s13104-020-05220-0
  17. PLoS Med. 2020 Aug;17(8): e1003227
    Galatas B, Saúte F, Martí-Soler H, Guinovart C, Nhamussua L, Simone W, Munguambe H, Hamido C, Montañà J, Muguande O, Maartens F, Luis F, Paaijmans K, Mayor A, Bassat Q, Menéndez C, Macete E, Rabinovich R, Alonso PL, Candrinho B, Aide P.
      BACKGROUND: Malaria eradication remains the long-term vision of the World Health Organization (WHO). However, whether malaria elimination is feasible in areas of stable transmission in sub-Saharan Africa with currently available tools remains a subject of debate. This study aimed to evaluate a multiphased malaria elimination project to interrupt Plasmodium falciparum malaria transmission in a rural district of southern Mozambique.METHODS AND FINDINGS: A before-after study was conducted between 2015 and 2018 in the district of Magude, with 48,448 residents living in 10,965 households. Building on an enhanced surveillance system, two rounds of mass drug administrations (MDAs) per year over two years (phase I, August 2015-2017), followed by one year of reactive focal mass drug administrations (rfMDAs) (phase II, September 2017-June 2018) were deployed with annual indoor residual spraying (IRS), programmatically distributed long-lasting insecticidal nets (LLINs), and standard case management. The four MDA rounds covered 58%-72% of the population, and annual IRS reported coverage was >70%. Yearly parasite surveys and routine surveillance data were used to monitor the primary outcomes of the study-malaria prevalence and incidence-at baseline and annually since the onset of the project. Parasite prevalence by rapid diagnostic test (RDT) declined from 9.1% (95% confidence interval [CI] 7.0-11.8) in May 2015 to 2.6% (95% CI 2.0-3.4), representing a 71.3% (95% CI 71.1-71.4, p < 0.001) reduction after phase I, and to 1.4% (95% CI 0.9-2.2) after phase II. This represented an 84.7% (95% CI 81.4-87.4, p < 0.001) overall reduction in all-age prevalence. Case incidence fell from 195 to 75 cases per 1,000 during phase I (61.5% reduction) and to 67 per 1,000 during phase II (65.6% overall reduction). Interrupted time series (ITS) analysis was used to estimate the level and trend change in malaria cases associated with the set of project interventions and the number of cases averted. Phase I interventions were associated with a significant immediate reduction in cases of 69.1% (95% CI 57.5-77.6, p < 0.001). Phase II interventions were not associated with a level or trend change. An estimated 76.7% of expected cases were averted throughout the project (38,369 cases averted of 50,005 expected). One malaria-associated inpatient death was observed during the study period. There were 277 mild adverse events (AEs) recorded through the passive pharmacovigilance system during the four MDA rounds. One serious adverse event (SAE) that resulted in death was potentially related to the drug. The study was limited by the incomplete coverage of interventions, the quality of the routine and cross-sectional data collected, and the restricted accuracy of ITS analysis with a short pre-intervention period.
    CONCLUSION: In this study, we observed that the interventions deployed during the Magude project fell short of interrupting P. falciparum transmission with the coverages achieved. While new tools and strategies may be required to eventually achieve malaria elimination in stable transmission areas of sub-Saharan Africa, this project showed that innovative mixes of interventions can achieve large reductions in disease burden, a necessary step in the pathway towards elimination.
    TRIAL REGISTRATION: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT02914145.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1003227
  18. Curr Pharm Des. 2020 Aug 05.
    de Souza MA, da Silva L, Dos Santos MAC, Macêdo MJF, Lacerda-Neto LJ, Coutinho HDM, de Oliveira LCC, Cunha FAB.
      The Aedes aegypti is responsible for the transmission of arboviruses, which compromise public health. In the search for synthetic product alternatives, essential oils (OEs) have been highlighted by many researchers as natural insecticides. This systematic review (SR) was performed according to PRISMA guidelines (Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses) and had as it's objective to evaluate studies addressing OEs with larvicidal properties against Ae. aegypti, through electronic database searches (Pubmed, Science Direct and Scielo), covering an overview of the plant sources OEs, which plant parts were used, the extraction methods, analytical techniques, major and/or secondary constituents with greater percentages, as well as the LC50s responsible for larval mortality. Following study analysis, plants distributed across 32 families, 90 genera and 175 species were identified. The Lamiaceae, Myrtaceae, Piperaceae, Asteraceae, Rutaceae, Euphorbiaceae and Lauraceae families obtained the highest number of species with toxic properties against larvae from this vector. Practically all plant parts were found to be used for OE extraction. Hydrodistillation and steam distillation were the main extraction methods identified, with GC-MS/GC-FID representing the main analytical techniques used to reveal their chemical composition, especially of terpene compounds. In this context, OEs are promising alternatives for the investigation of natural, ecologically correct and biodegradable insecticides with the potential to be used in Ae. aegypti control programs.
    Keywords:  Aedes aegypti; bioinsecticides; essential oils; larvicidal activity.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.2174/1381612826666200806100500
  19. Rev Panam Salud Publica. 2020 ;44 e92
    Valdez D, Keys H, Ureña K, Cabral D, Camilo F, Ogando EC, Mercedes L, Noland GS, Blount SB, Lavery JV, Desir L, Puello J.
      Community engagement is crucial for public health initiatives, yet it remains an under-studied process within national disease elimination programs. This report shares key lessons learned for community engagement practices during a malaria outbreak response in the Los Tres Brazos neighborhood of urban Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic from 2015-2016. In this two-year period, 233 cases of malaria were reported-more than seven times the number of cases (31) reported in the previous two years. The initial outbreak response by the national malaria program emphasized "top-down" interventions such as active surveillance, vector control, and educative talks within the community. Despite a transient reduction in reported cases in mid-2015, transmission resurged at the end of 2015. The program responded by introducing active roles for trained community members that included door-to-door fever screening, testing with rapid diagnostic tests and treatment. Malaria cases declined significantly throughout 2016 and community-based active surveillance infrastructure helped to detect and limit a small episode of transmission in 2017. Results from qualitative research among community members revealed two key factors that facilitated their cooperation with community-based surveillance activities: motivation to help one's community; and trust among stakeholders (community health workers, their neighbors and other key figures in the community, and malaria program staff and leadership). This experience suggests that community-led interventions and the program's willingness to learn and adapt under changing circumstances can help control malaria transmission and pave the way for elimination.
    Keywords:  Dominican Republic; Malaria; community participation; community-institutional relations; disease elimination
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.26633/RPSP.2020.92
  20. Trop Parasitol. 2020 Jan-Jun;10(1):10(1): 3-6
    Naik DG.
      Malaria, a mosquito-transmitted parasitic disease, has been targeted for elimination in many parts of the world. For many years, Plasmodium vivax, Plasmodium falciparum, Plasmodium ovale and Plasmodium malariae have been known to cause malaria in humans. Now, Plasmodium knowlesi is considered to be an important cause of malaria, especially in Southeast Asia. The emergence of P. knowlesi with zoonotic implication is a challenge in the elimination efforts of malaria in Southeast Asia. P. knowlesi is known to cause severe complicated malaria in humans. P. knowlesi parasite is transmitted between humans and wild macaque through mosquito vectors. It appears that the malaria disease severity and host immune evasion depend on antigenic variation exhibited at the surface of the infected erythrocyte. P. knowlesi is sensitive to antimalarial drug artemisinin. Identification of vector species, their biting behavior, timely correct diagnosis, and treatment are important steps in disease management and control. There is a need to identify and implement effective intervention measures to cut the chain of transmissions from animals to humans. The zoonotic malaria definitely poses a significant challenge in elimination and subsequent eradication of all types of malaria from this globe.
    Keywords:  Artemisinin; Plasmodium knowlesi; malaria; mosquito; parasite
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.4103/tp.TP_17_18
  21. Vaccine. 2020 Aug 09. pii: S0264-410X(20)31025-2. [Epub ahead of print]
    Stoffella-Dutra AG, Silva de Oliveira J, Barbosa Costa G, Geessien Kroon E, Santos Abrahão J, Desiree LaBeaud A, Paiva Drumond B, Bretas de Oliveira D, de Souza Trindade G.
      Yellow Fever (YF) is an acute febrile illness caused by yellow fever virus (YFV), a mosquito-borne flavivirus transmitted to humans and non-human primates. In Brazil, YF is a public health threat and may cause recurrent epidemics, even with the availability of a vaccine. We evaluated the sero-status for YFV in 581 individuals living in a risk area for YF in Brazil. The area presents history of cases and is located in the southeast region of country where outbreaks of YF have been reported since 2016. Through, a PRNT assay, we found 25.8% of individuals lacking YF-neutralizing antibodies. Furthermore, neutralizing antibodies were not detected in 10 individuals with proven vaccination. Our findings reinforce the importance of surveillance systems and the need of an urgent intensification of immunization programs in regions with YFV circulation. Monitoring susceptible individuals that could act as potential disseminators for YFV in risk areas should also be considered.
    Keywords:  Epidemiological surveillance; Public health; Serological survey; YF-neutralizing antibodies; Yellow fever virus
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.vaccine.2020.07.077
  22. Malar J. 2020 Aug 12. 19(1): 286
    Kané F, Keïta M, Traoré B, Diawara SI, Bane S, Diarra S, Sogoba N, Doumbia S.
      BACKGROUND: Koulikoro Health District is one of three districts of Mali where the indoor residual spray (IRS) has been implemented from 2008 to 2016. With widespread of resistance to pyrethroid, IRS was shifted from pyrethroid to pirimiphos-methyl from 2014 to 2016. The objective of this study was to assess the added value of IRS to LLINs on the prevalence of parasitaemia and malaria incidence among children under 10 years old.METHODS: A comparative study was carried out to assess the effects of pirimiphos-methyl based IRS on malaria prevalence and incidence among children from 6 months to 10 years old in selected pyrethroid resistance villages of two health districts in Mali: one where IRS was implemented in combination with LLINs (intervention area) and one with LLINs-only (control area). Two cross-sectional surveys were carried out at the beginning (June) and end of the rainy season (October) to assess seasonal changes in malaria parasitaemia by microscopy. A passive detection case (PCD) was set-up in each study village for 9 months to estimate the incidence of malaria using RDT.
    RESULTS: There was an increase of 220% in malaria prevalence from June to October in the control area (14% to 42%) versus only 53% in the IRS area (9.2% to 13.2%). Thus, the proportional rise in malaria prevalence from the dry to the rainy season in 2016 was 4-times greater in the control area compared to the IRS area. The overall malaria incidence rate was 2.7 per 100 person-months in the IRS area compared with 6.8 per 100 person-month in the control areas. The Log-rank test of Kaplan-Meier survival analysis showed that children living in IRS area remain much longer free from malaria (Hazard ratio (HR) = 0.45, CI 95% 0.37-0.54) than children of the control area (P < 0.0001).
    CONCLUSIONS: IRS using pirimiphos-methyl has been successful in reducing substantially both the prevalence and the incidence of malaria in children under 10 years old in the area of pyrethroid resistance of Koulikoro, Mali. Pirimiphos-methyl is a better alternative than pyrethroids for IRS in areas with widespread of pyrethroid resistance.
    Keywords:  IRS; Incidence; LLINs; Malaria; Mali; Parasitaemia
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1186/s12936-020-03357-8
  23. J Physiol Anthropol. 2020 Aug 14. 39(1): 19
    Kaur N, Rahim SSSA, Jaimin JJ, Dony JJF, Khoon KT, Ahmed K.
      BACKGROUND: Malaysia recorded the highest number of dengue cases between 2014 and 2017. There are 13 states and three federal territories in Malaysia, and each area varies in their prevalence of dengue. Sabah is one of the states situated in Borneo, Malaysia. Although dengue has been increasing for the last several years, no study was being done to understand the burden and serotype distribution of the dengue virus (DENV) in Sabah. Therefore, the present study was carried out to understand the epidemiology of the dengue infection and the factors responsible for severe dengue in Sabah.METHODS: Data on dengue infection were extracted from the dengue database of the state of Sabah from 2013 through 2018. DENV NS-1-positive serum samples from multiple sites throughout Sabah were sent to the state public health laboratory, Kota Kinabalu Public Health Laboratory, for serotype determination. The analysis of factors associated with severe dengue was determined from the data of 2018 only.
    RESULTS: In 2013, there were 724 dengue cases; however, from 2014, dengue cases increased exponentially and resulted in 3423 cases in 2018. Increasing dengue cases also led to increased dengue mortality. The number of dengue deaths in 2013 was only five which then gradually increased, and in 2018, 29 patients died. This is an increase of 580% from 2013 to 2018. Deaths were considerably more in the districts of the east coast of Sabah compared with districts in the west coast. During the study period, all DENV serotypes could be identified as serotypes circulating in Sabah. In 2018, the predominant serotype was DENV-3. The monthly peak of dengue infection varied in different years. In the logistic regression analysis, it was identified that children were 6.5 times, patients infected with mixed serotype of DENV were 13 times, and cases from the districts of the east coast were 5.2 times more likely to develop severe dengue.
    CONCLUSIONS: An increasing trend of dengue infection has been observed in Sabah. The burden of dengue, severe dengue, and mortality was noted especially in the districts of the east coast of Sabah. Severe dengue was most likely developed in children, cases from the east coast, and patients infected with mixed serotype of DENV.
    Keywords:  Dengue; Genotype; Sabah; Serotype; Severe dengue
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1186/s40101-020-00230-0
  24. Euro Surveill. 2020 Aug;25(32):
    Pervanidou D, Vakali A, Georgakopoulou T, Panagiotopoulos T, Patsoula E, Koliopoulos G, Politis C, Stamoulis K, Gavana E, Pappa S, Mavrouli M, Emmanouil M, Sourvinos G, Mentis A, Tsakris A, Hadjichristodoulou C, Tsiodras S, Papa A.
      BackgroundHuman cases of West Nile virus (WNV) infection are recorded since 2010 in Greece, with seasonal outbreaks occurring almost annually. Enhanced surveillance has been implemented since 2010, to promptly characterise cases' temporal and geographical distribution and inform authorities for implementation of appropriate measures (mosquito control, health education, blood safety).AimWe describe the epidemiology of WNV human infections in Greece focusing on the 2018 season.MethodsThe National Public Health Organization advised physicians to test all suspect WNV infection cases and refer samples to reference laboratories. Laboratories notified diagnosed cases on a daily basis. Treating physicians, patients, and infected blood donors were interviewed within 48 hours after diagnosis and the probable infection location was identified. Hospitalised cases were followed up until discharge.ResultsA total of 317 autochthonous WNV infection cases were diagnosed in 2018. Among them, 243 cases had neuroinvasive disease (WNND), representing a 23% increase of WNND cases compared with 2010, the previous most intense season. There were 51 deaths. Cases started occurring from week 22, earlier than usual. Both rural and urban areas were affected, with 86 (26% of the total) municipalities belonging to seven (54% of the total) regions recording cases. Two major epicentres were identified in Attica and Central Macedonia regions.ConclusionsThe largest number of human cases of WNV infection ever recorded in Greece occurred in 2018, with a wide geographical distribution, suggesting intense virus circulation. Enhanced surveillance is vital for the early detection of human cases and the prompt implementation of response measures.
    Keywords:  2018; Greece; West Nile Virus; vectorborne diseases
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.2807/1560-7917.ES.2020.25.32.1900543
  25. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2020 Aug;14(8): e0008338
    Guth S, Hanley KA, Althouse BM, Boots M.
      Pathogens originating from wildlife (zoonoses) pose a significant public health burden, comprising the majority of emerging infectious diseases. Efforts to control and prevent zoonotic disease have traditionally focused on animal-to-human transmission, or "spillover." However, in the modern era, increasing international mobility and commerce facilitate the spread of infected humans, nonhuman animals (hereafter animals), and their products worldwide, thereby increasing the risk that zoonoses will be introduced to new geographic areas. Imported zoonoses can potentially "spill back" to infect local wildlife-a danger magnified by urbanization and other anthropogenic pressures that increase contacts between human and wildlife populations. In this way, humans can function as vectors, dispersing zoonoses from their ancestral enzootic systems to establish reservoirs elsewhere in novel animal host populations. Once established, these enzootic cycles are largely unassailable by standard control measures and have the potential to feed human epidemics. Understanding when and why translocated zoonoses establish novel enzootic cycles requires disentangling ecologically complex and stochastic interactions between the zoonosis, the human population, and the natural ecosystem. In this Review, we address this challenge by delineating potential ecological mechanisms affecting each stage of enzootic establishment-wildlife exposure, enzootic infection, and persistence-applying existing ecological concepts from epidemiology, invasion biology, and population ecology. We ground our discussion in the neotropics, where four arthropod-borne viruses (arboviruses) of zoonotic origin-yellow fever, dengue, chikungunya, and Zika viruses-have separately been introduced into the human population. This paper is a step towards developing a framework for predicting and preventing novel enzootic cycles in the face of zoonotic translocations.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pntd.0008338