bims-mosdis Biomed News
on Mosquito distribution and disease
Issue of 2021‒05‒23
twenty papers selected by
Richard Halfpenny
Staffordshire University

  1. PLoS One. 2021 ;16(5): e0251742
      BACKGROUND: This study provides detailed characteristics of vector populations in preparation for a three-arm cluster randomized controlled trial (RCT) aiming to compare the community impact of dual active-ingredient (AI) long-lasting insecticidal nets (LLINs) that combine two novel insecticide classes-chlorfenapyr or pyriproxifen-with alpha-cypermethrin to improve the prevention of malaria transmitted by insecticide-resistant vectors compared to standard pyrethroid LLINs.METHODS: The study was carried out in 60 villages across Cove, Zangnanando and Ouinhi districts, southern Benin. Mosquito collections were performed using human landing catches (HLCs). After morphological identification, a sub-sample of Anopheles gambiae s.l. were dissected for parity, analyzed by PCR for species and presence of L1014F kdr mutation and by ELISA-CSP to identify Plasmodium falciparum sporozoite infection. WHO susceptibility tube tests were performed by exposing adult An. gambiae s.l., collected as larvae from each district, to 0.05% alphacypermethrin, 0.75% permethrin, 0.1% bendiocarb and 0.25% pirimiphos-methyl. Synergist assays were also conducted with exposure first to 4% PBO followed by alpha-cypermethrin.
    RESULTS: An. gambiae s.l. (n = 10807) was the main malaria vector complex found followed by Anopheles funestus s.l. (n = 397) and Anopheles nili (n = 82). An. gambiae s.l. was comprised of An. coluzzii (53.9%) and An. gambiae s.s. (46.1%), both displaying a frequency of the L1014F kdr mutation >80%. Although more than 80% of people slept under standard LLIN, human biting rate (HBR) in An. gambiae s.l. was higher indoors [26.5 bite/person/night (95% CI: 25.2-27.9)] than outdoors [18.5 b/p/n (95% CI: 17.4-19.6)], as were the trends for sporozoite rate (SR) [2.9% (95% CI: 1.7-4.8) vs 1.8% (95% CI: 0.6-3.8)] and entomological inoculation rate (EIR) [21.6 infected bites/person/month (95% CI: 20.4-22.8) vs 5.4 (95% CI: 4.8-6.0)]. Parous rate was 81.6% (95%CI: 75.4-88.4). An. gambiae s.l. was resistant to alpha-cypermethrin and permethrin but, fully susceptible to bendiocarb and pirimiphos-methyl. PBO pre-exposure followed by alpha-cypermethrin treatment induced a higher 24 hours mortality compared to alphacypermethrin alone but not exceeding 40%.
    CONCLUSIONS: Despite a high usage of standard pyrethroid LLINs, the study area is characterized by intense malaria transmission. The main vectors An. coluzzii and An. gambiae s.s. were both highly resistant to pyrethroids and displayed multiple resistance mechanisms, L1014F kdr mutation and mixed function oxidases. These conditions of the study area make it an appropriate site to conduct the trial that aims to assess the effect of novel dual-AI LLINs on malaria transmitted by insecticide-resistant vectors.
  2. Curr Opin Virol. 2021 May 12. pii: S1879-6257(21)00036-5. [Epub ahead of print]49 7-12
      Mosquitoes are the major vectors for arthropod-borne viruses (arboviruses) of medical importance. Aedes aegypti and A. albopictus are the most prolific and widespread mosquito vectors being responsible for global transmission of dengue, Zika and Chikungunya viruses. Characterizing the collection of viruses circulating in mosquitoes, the virome, has long been of special interest. In addition to arboviruses, mosquitoes carry insect-specific viruses (ISVs) that do not directly infect vertebrates. Mounting evidence indicates that ISVs interact with arboviruses and may affect mosquito vector competence. Here, we review our current knowledge about the virome of vector mosquitoes and discuss the challenges for the field that may lead to novel strategies to prevent outbreaks of arboviruses.
  3. Parasit Vectors. 2021 May 20. 14(1): 265
      BACKGROUND: The human landing catch (HLC) measures human exposure to mosquito bites and evaluates the efficacy of vector control tools. However, it may expose volunteers to potentially infected mosquitoes. The mosquito electrocuting trap (MET) and BG-Sentinel traps (BGS) represent alternative, exposure-free methods for sampling host-seeking mosquitoes. This study investigates whether these methods can be effectively used as alternatives to HLC for measuring the efficacy of transfluthrin emanator against Aedes aegypti.METHODS: The protective efficacy (PE) of freestanding passive transfluthrin emanators (FTPEs), measured by HLC, MET and BGS, was compared in no-choice and choice tests. The collection methods were conducted 2 m from an experimental hut with FTPEs positioned at 3 m on either side of them. For the choice experiment, a competitor HLC was included 10 m from the first collection point. One hundred laboratory-reared Ae. aegypti mosquitoes were released and collected for 3 consecutive h.
    RESULTS: In the no-choice test, each method measured similar PE: HLC: 66% (95% confidence interval [CI]: 50-82), MET: 55% (95% CI: 48-63) and BGS: 64% (95% CI: 54-73). The proportion of mosquitoes recaptured was consistent between methods (20-24%) in treatment and varied (47-71%) in the control. However, in choice tests, the PE measured by each method varied: HLC: 37% (95% CI: 25-50%), MET: 76% (95% CI: 61-92) and BGS trap: 0% (95% CI: 0-100). Recaptured mosquitoes were no longer consistent between methods in treatment (2-26%) and remained variable in the control (7-42%). FTPE provided 50% PE to the second HLC 10 m away. In the control, the MET and the BGS were less efficacious in collecting mosquitoes in the presence of a second HLC.
    CONCLUSIONS: Measuring the PE in isolation was fairly consistent for HLC, MET and BGS. Because HLC is not advisable, it is reasonable to use either MET or BGS as a proxy for HLC for testing volatile pyrethroid (VP) in areas of active arbovirus-endemic areas. The presence of a human host in close proximity invalidated the PE estimates from BGS and METs. Findings also indicated that transfluthrin can protect multiple people in the peridomestic area and that at short range mosquitoes select humans over the BGS.
    Keywords:  Ae. aegypti; BG-Sentinel; Human landing catch; Mosquito electrocuting trap; Spatial repellent
  4. Emerg Infect Dis. 2021 ;27(6): 1697-1700
      Anopheles stephensi mosquitoes share urban breeding sites with Aedes aegypti and Culex quinquefasciatus mosquitoes in the Republic of Djibouti. We present evidence that A. stephensi mosquitoes might be responsible for an increase in malaria incidence in this country. We also document resistance of Plasmodium falciparum to dihydroartemisinin/piperaquine.
    Keywords:  Anopheles stephensi; Djibouti; Plasmodium falciparum; Plasmodium vivax; antimalarial drug; antimicrobial resistance; malaria; mosquito-borne infections; mosquitoes; outbreak; parasites; parasitic infections; resistance; urban malaria; vector-borne infections
  5. Parasit Vectors. 2021 May 21. 14(1): 249
      BACKGROUND: Zoological gardens contain unique configurations of exotic and endemic animals and plants that create a diverse range of developing sites and potential sources of blood meals for local mosquitoes. This may imply unusual interspecific pathogen transmission risks involving zoo vertebrates, like avian malaria to captive penguins. Understanding mosquito ecology and host feeding patterns is necessary to improve mosquito control and disease prevention measures in these environments.METHODS: Mosquito sampling took place in Chester Zoo for 3 years (2017, 2018, and 2019) and for 1 year in Flamingo Land (2017) using different trapping methods. Blood-fed mosquitoes were identified and their blood meal was amplified by PCR, sequenced, and blasted for host species identification.
    RESULTS: In total, 640 blood-fed mosquitoes were collected [Culex pipiens (n = 497), Culiseta annulata (n = 81), Anopheles maculipennis s.l. (n = 7), An. claviger (n = 1), and unidentifiable (n = 55)]. Successful identification of the host species was achieved from 159 blood-fed mosquitoes. Mosquitoes fed on birds (n = 74), non-human mammals (n = 20), and humans (n = 71). There were mixed blood meals from two hosts (n = 6). The proportions of blood-fed mosquitoes varied across sampling seasons and sites within the zoos. The use of resting traps and aspiration of vegetation were more efficient techniques for capturing blood-fed mosquitoes than traps for host-seeking or gravid mosquitoes. By relating the locations of zoo vertebrates to where fed mosquitoes were trapped, the minimum travelling distances were calculated (13.7 to 366.7 m). Temperature, precipitation, relative humidity, proximity to zoo vertebrate exhibits, and vegetation level were found to be significantly associated with the proportion of captured blood-fed mosquitoes by generalized linear modelling.
    CONCLUSIONS: Mosquito feeding behaviour in zoos is mainly influenced by time, location (sampling area), temperature, and host availability, which highlights the value of mosquito monitoring in complex settings to plan control strategies and potentially reduce inherent disease transmission risks for humans and threatened zoo vertebrates.
    Keywords:  Blood meal; Culex pipiens; Culiseta annulata; Mosquito control; Mosquito dispersal
  6. PLoS One. 2021 ;16(5): e0251403
      Dengue is a re-emerging disease, currently considered the most important mosquito-borne arbovirus infection affecting humankind, taking into account both its morbidity and mortality. Brazil is considered an endemic country for dengue, such that more than 1,544,987 confirmed cases were notified in 2019, which means an incidence rate of 735 for every 100 thousand inhabitants. Climate is an important factor in the temporal and spatial distribution of vector-borne diseases, such as dengue. Thus, rainfall and temperature are considered macro-factors determinants for dengue, since they directly influence the population density of Aedes aegypti, which is subject to seasonal fluctuations, mainly due to these variables. This study examined the incidence of dengue fever related to the climate influence by using temperature and rainfall variables data obtained from remote sensing via artificial satellites in the metropolitan region of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The mathematical model that best fits the data is based on an auto-regressive moving average with exogenous inputs (ARMAX). It reproduced the values of incidence rates in the study period and managed to predict with good precision in a one-year horizon. The approach described in present work may be replicated in cities around the world by the public health managers, to build auxiliary operational tools for control and prevention tasks of dengue, as well of other arbovirus diseases.
  7. Infect Dis Model. 2021 ;6 664-677
      Introduction: Yellow fever (YF) is primarily transmitted by Haemagogus species of mosquitoes. Under climate change, mosquitoes and the pathogens that they carry are expected to develop faster, potentially impacting the case count and duration of YF outbreaks. The aim of this study was to determine how YF virus outbreaks in Brazil may change under future climate, using ensemble simulations from regional climate models under RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 scenarios for three time periods: 2011-2040 (short-term), 2041-2070 (mid-term), and 2071-2100 (long-term).Methods: A compartmental model was developed to fit the 2017/18 YF outbreak data in Brazil using least squares optimization. To explore the impact of climate change, temperature-sensitive mosquito parameters were set to change over projected time periods using polynomial equations fitted to their relationship with temperature according to the average temperature for years 2011-2040, 2041-2070, and 2071-2100 for climate change scenarios using RCP4.5 and RCP8.5, where RCP4.5/RCP8.5 corresponds to intermediate/high radiative forcing values and to moderate/higher warming trends. A sensitivity analysis was conducted to determine how the temperature-sensitive parameters impacted model results, and to determine how vaccination could play a role in reducing YF in Brazil.
    Results: Yellow fever case projections for Brazil from the models varied when climate change scenarios were applied, including the peak clinical case incidence, cumulative clinical case incidence, time to peak incidence, and the outbreak duration. Overall, a decrease in YF cases and outbreak duration was observed. Comparing the observed incidence in 2017/18 to the projected incidence in 2070-2100, for RCP4.5, the cumulative case incidence decreased from 184 to 161, and the outbreak duration decreased from 21 to 20 weeks. For RCP8.5, the peak case incidence decreased from 184 to 147, and the outbreak duration decreased from 21 to 17 weeks. The observed decrease was primarily due to temperature increasing beyond that suitable for Haemagogus mosquito survival.
    Conclusions: Climate change is anticipated to have an impact on mosquito-borne diseases. We found outbreaks of YF may reduce in intensity as temperatures increase in Brazil; however, temperature is not the only factor involved with disease transmission. Other factors must be explored to determine the attributable impact of climate change on mosquito-borne diseases.
    Keywords:  Climate change; Infectious disease model; Mosquito-borne disease; Temperature; Yellow fever
  8. PLoS One. 2021 ;16(5): e0251517
      BACKGROUND: Since 1999, West Nile virus (WNV) has moved rapidly across the United States, resulting in tens of thousands of human cases. Both the number of human cases and the minimum infection rate (MIR) in vector mosquitoes vary across time and space and are driven by numerous abiotic and biotic forces, ranging from differences in microclimates to socio-demographic factors. Because the interactions among these multiple factors affect the locally variable risk of WNV illness, it has been especially difficult to model human disease risk across varying spatial and temporal scales. Cook and DuPage Counties, comprising the city of Chicago and surrounding suburbs, experience some of the highest numbers of human neuroinvasive cases of WNV in the United States. Despite active mosquito control efforts, there is consistent annual WNV presence, resulting in more than 285 confirmed WNV human cases and 20 deaths from the years 2014-2018 in Cook County alone.METHODS: A previous Chicago-area WNV model identified the fifty-five most high and low risk locations in the Northwest Mosquito Abatement District (NWMAD), an enclave ¼ the size of the combined Cook and DuPage county area. In these locations, human WNV risk was stratified by model performance, as indicated by differences in studentized residuals. Within these areas, an additional two-years of field collections and data processing was added to a 12-year WNV dataset that includes human cases, MIR, vector abundance, and land-use, historical climate, and socio-economic and demographic variables, and was assessed by an ultra-fine-scale (1 km spatial x 1 week temporal resolution) multivariate logistic regression model.
    RESULTS: Multivariate statistical methods applied to the ultra-fine-scale model identified fewer explanatory variables while improving upon the fit of the previous model. Beyond MIR and climatic factors, efforts to acquire additional covariates only slightly improved model predictive performance.
    CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest human WNV illness in the Chicago area may be associated with fewer, but increasingly critical, key variables at finer scales. Given limited resources, these findings suggest large variations in model performance occur, depending on covariate availability, and provide guidance in variable selection for optimal WNV human illness modeling.
  9. Proc Biol Sci. 2021 May 26. 288(1951): 20210714
      Aedes aegypti is the dominant vector of dengue, a potentially fatal virus whose incidence has increased eightfold in the last two decades. As dengue has no widely available vaccine, vector control is key to reducing the global public health burden. A promising method is the release of self-limiting Ae. aegypti, which mate with wild Ae. aegypti and produce non-viable offspring. The resultant decrease in Ae. aegypti population size may impact coexistence with Ae. albopictus, another vector of dengue. A behavioural mechanism influencing coexistence between these species is reproductive interference, where incomplete species recognition results in heterospecifics engaging in mating activities. We develop a theoretical framework to investigate the interaction between self-limiting Ae. aegypti releases and reproductive interference between Ae. aegypti and Ae. albopictus on patterns of coexistence. In the absence of self-limiting Ae. aegypti release, coexistence can occur when the strength of reproductive interference experienced by both species is low. Results show that substantial overflooding with self-limiting Ae. aegypti prevents coexistence. For lower release ratios, as the release ratio increases, coexistence can occur when the strength of reproductive interference is increasingly high for Ae. albopictus and increasingly low for Ae. aegypti. This emphasizes the importance of including behavioural ecological processes into population models to evaluate the efficacy of vector control.
    Keywords:  behavioural ecology; disease ecology; release of insects carrying a dominant lethal; reproductive interference; sterile insect technique; vector control
  10. Acta Trop. 2021 May 14. pii: S0001-706X(21)00138-8. [Epub ahead of print] 105959
      We conducted an island-wide survey of the Caribbean islands Puerto Rico and Vieques, U.S.A. during late 2018 and early 2019 to document the current richness of mosquitoes (Diptera: Culicidae). We used a combination of larval surveys and adult trapping using baited CDC light traps and BG-Sentinel traps across 41 of the 78 municipalities. We collected 9 genera, 12 subgenera, and 31 species, which when combined with past studies yields 44 species on the islands. We also note species occurrences across habitat types and elevations from around the islands. One new record, Aedes (Ochlerotatus) obturbator Dyar and Knab, is noted. However we found no evidence of the presence of Aedes albopictus (Skuse), an invasive found throughout the Caribbean, or Aedes (Fredwardsius) vittatus (Bigot), an exotic species recently reported in the Dominican Republic and Cuba. Habitat associations and information regarding the medical importance of species are also included. Given that the islands often experience outbreaks of several arboviruses, obtaining a complete picture of the species present is of high importance.
  11. J Med Entomol. 2021 May 17. pii: tjab093. [Epub ahead of print]
      Resistance status of Aedes albopictus (Skuse) from 13 districts in Sarawak State, Malaysia, was evaluated against four major classes of adulticides, namely organochlorine, organophosphate, carbamate, and pyrethroid. Adult bioassays were performed according to the World Health Organization (WHO) standard protocols to assess knockdown and mortality rates of Ae. albopictus. Among the tested pyrethroids, only cyfluthrin was able to exhibit complete knockdown. On the other hand, different susceptibility and resistance patterns were observed in other adulticides. As for mortality rates, the mosquitoes were susceptible to cyfluthrin and dieldrin but exhibited various susceptibilities to other tested adulticides. Cross-resistance was discovered within and between tested insecticide classes. Significant correlations were found within pyrethroid and carbamate classes (i.e., bendiocab and propoxur, P = 0.036; etofenprox and permethrin, P = 0.000; deltamethrin and lambda-cyhalothrin, P = 0.822; deltamethrin and permethrin, P = 0.042). Additionally, insecticides belonging to different groups were also found significantly correlated (i.e., malathion and deltamethin, P = 0.019; malathion and bendiocarb, P = 0.008; malathion and propoxur, P = 0.007; and bendiocarb and deltamethrin, P = 0.031). In conclusion, cyfluthrin was effective for Aedes albopictus control in Sarawak State and these data may assist local authorities to improve future vector control operations.
    Keywords:   Aedes albopictus ; Borneo; insecticide
  12. PLoS Pathog. 2021 May 20. 17(5): e1009486
      Vitellogenesis and oocyte maturation require anautogenous female Anopheles mosquitoes to obtain a bloodmeal from a vertebrate host. The bloodmeal is rich in proteins that are readily broken down into amino acids in the midgut lumen and absorbed by the midgut epithelial cells where they are converted into lipids and then transported to other tissues including ovaries. The stearoyl-CoA desaturase (SCD) plays a pivotal role in this process by converting saturated (SFAs) to unsaturated (UFAs) fatty acids; the latter being essential for maintaining cell membrane fluidity amongst other housekeeping functions. Here, we report the functional and phenotypic characterization of SCD1 in the malaria vector mosquito Anopheles coluzzii. We show that RNA interference (RNAi) silencing of SCD1 and administration of sterculic acid (SA), a small molecule inhibitor of SCD1, significantly impact on the survival and reproduction of female mosquitoes following blood feeding. Microscopic observations reveal that the mosquito thorax is quickly filled with blood, a phenomenon likely caused by the collapse of midgut epithelial cell membranes, and that epithelial cells are depleted of lipid droplets and oocytes fail to mature. Transcriptional profiling shows that genes involved in protein, lipid and carbohydrate metabolism and immunity-related genes are the most affected by SCD1 knock down (KD) in blood-fed mosquitoes. Metabolic profiling reveals that these mosquitoes exhibit increased amounts of saturated fatty acids and TCA cycle intermediates, highlighting the biochemical framework by which the SCD1 KD phenotype manifests as a result of a detrimental metabolic syndrome. Accumulation of SFAs is also the likely cause of the potent immune response observed in the absence of infection, which resembles an auto-inflammatory condition. These data provide insights into mosquito bloodmeal metabolism and lipid homeostasis and could inform efforts to develop novel interventions against mosquito-borne diseases.
  13. Ecosphere. 2021 Apr;pii: e03463. [Epub ahead of print]12(4):
      Deforestation precipitates spillover of enzootic, vector-borne viruses into humans, but specific mechanisms for this effect have rarely been investigated. Expansion of oil palm cultivation is a major driver of deforestation. Here, we demonstrate that mosquito abundance decreased over ten stepwise distances from interior forest into conterminous palm plantations in Borneo. Diversity in interior plantation narrowed to one species, Aedes albopictus, a potential bridge vector for spillover of multiple viruses. A. albopictus was equally abundant across all distances in forests, forest-plantation edge, and plantations, while A. niveus, a known vector of sylvatic dengue virus, was found only in forests. A. albopictus collections were significantly female-biased in plantation but not in edge or forest. Our data reveal that the likelihood of encountering any mosquito is greater in interior forest and edge than plantation, while the likelihood of encountering A. albopictus is equivalent across the gradient sampled from interior plantation to interior forest.
    Keywords:  Aedes; Borneo; arthropod-borne virus; dengue virus; land cover and land use change; mosquito; oil palm; spillover
  14. Data Brief. 2021 Jun;36 107047
      This article reports data on the occurrence and spread of three invasive mosquito species: Aedes japonicus, Aedes koreicus, and Aedes albopictus in two regions of Northeast Italy; resulting from larval and adult collections performed during the 2011-2020 period in the framework of different projects. Routine species identification was performed using morphological characters and complemented by molecular methods when required. For the years 2019 and 2020, detailed data are reported which update previous information on municipalities and sites where these species have been detected. Geo-referenced information on the presence of invasive mosquitoes is reported and demonstrated on maps. Additional data on the nature of breeding sites and the finding of native mosquito species in the same collections are also provided.
    Keywords:  Aedes j. japonicus; Aedes koreicus; Ecology; Entomological surveillance; Europe; Hulecoeteomyia japonica; Hulecoeteomyia koreica; Northeast Italy
  15. J Med Entomol. 2021 May 21. pii: tjab090. [Epub ahead of print]
      Over the last few decades, a substantial number of anti-malarial effector genes have been evaluated for their ability to block parasite infection in the mosquito vector. While many of these approaches have yielded significant effects on either parasite intensity or prevalence of infection, just a few have been able to completely block transmission. Additionally, many approaches, while effective against the parasite, also disrupt or alter important aspects of mosquito physiology, leading to corresponding changes in lifespan, reproduction, and immunity. As the most promising approaches move towards field-based evaluation, questions of effector gene robustness and durability move to the forefront. In this forum piece, we critically evaluate past effector gene approaches with an eye towards developing a deeper pipeline to augment the current best candidates.
    Keywords:  malaria; mosquito; parasite; plasmodium; transgenic
  16. Geospat Health. 2021 May 14. 16(1):
      Aedes albopictus is a known vector of dengue and chikungunya. Understanding the population dynamics characteristics of vector species is of pivotal importance to optimise surveillance and control activities, to estimate risk for pathogen-transmission, and thus to enhance support of public health decisions. In this paper we used a seasonal activity model to simulate the start (spring hatching) and end (autumn diapause) of the vector season. In parallel, the peak abundance of the species was assessed using both VectorNet field survey data complemented with field studies obtained from literature across the Mediterranean Basin. Our results suggest that spring hatching of eggs in the current distribution area can start at the beginning of March in southern Europe and in April in western Europe. In northern Europe, where the species is not (yet) present, spring hatching would occur from late April to late May. Aedes albopictus can remain active up to 41 weeks in southern Europe whilst the climatic conditions in northern Europe are limiting its potential activity to a maximum of 23 weeks. The peak of egg density is found during summer months from end of July until end of September. During these two months the climatic conditions for species development are optimal, which implies a higher risk for arbovirus transmission by Ae. albopictus and occurrence of epidemics.
  17. Malar J. 2021 May 19. 20(1): 224
      BACKGROUND: Sixty percent of the Ethiopia population is at risk of malaria, with the highest prevalence reported in Gambella (6%) and Benishangul-Gumuz (3%) regions. Within these regions are large agricultural developments with high numbers of seasonal migrant workers. The migrant workers are believed to be at increased risk for malaria infection due to their poor living conditions and outdoor activities, but there is little information on their specific behaviours and health risks. This study was conducted to address this gap.METHODS: Quantitative observations were conducted from September to December 2017 in the Benishangul-Gumuz Region. The nightly routines of mobile migrant workers were observed every month for 4 consecutive months. The study team collected quantitative data including nocturnal behavioural observations of worker living conditions, malaria prevention efforts, and work activities and surveys of worker representatives. Qualitative data was collected from migrant workers, farm managers and local health providers using focus group discussions and semi-structured interviews.
    RESULTS: Migrant workers arrived in the study area during the peak malaria transmission season and the workers in focus groups reported repeated cases of malaria during their stay on the farms. Overall, less than a quarter of the migrant workers were sleeping under a mosquito net by midnight in all 4 observation months. Some work activities also took place outdoors at night. The study additionally found a lack of access to malaria prevention and treatment at the farms and challenges in utilizing local public health facilities.
    CONCLUSIONS: There is a need to better address malaria prevention and treatment needs among migrant workers in Ethiopia through outreach from existing healthcare infrastructure and within the farms themselves. This will help prevent malaria transmission both within this population and prevent transmission of malaria back to home communities in lower burden areas in Ethiopia.
    Keywords:  Ethiopia; Focus group; Malaria; Migrant worker; Semi-structured interview
  18. Lancet Infect Dis. 2021 May 18. pii: S1473-3099(20)30733-7. [Epub ahead of print]
      BACKGROUND: Zika virus, a flavivirus transmitted by Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus mosquitoes, is associated with cases of congenital malformations and neurological complications. Absence of specific treatment makes a prophylactic Zika virus vaccine an unmet medical need. We assessed safety and immunogenicity of three doses of a purified, inactivated, Zika virus vaccine candidate in healthy flavivirus-naive and flavivirus-primed adults.METHODS: This two-part, multicentre, observer-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled, phase 1 trial was done at seven medical clinics in the USA and two in Puerto Rico. Eligible participants were healthy adults aged 18-49 years. Participants were randomly assigned (1:1:1:1), using a sponsor-supplied randomisation scheme, to four groups to receive two intramuscular injections, 28 days apart, of saline placebo or TAK-426 containing 2 μg, 5 μg, or 10 μg antigen. Participants, investigators, and vaccine administrating personnel were masked to group assignment. Part 1 of the study assessed flavivirus-naive participants and part 2 assessed flavivirus-primed participants. The primary outcomes were safety, tolerability, and immunogenicity based on solicited local reactions and solicited systemic adverse events in the 7 days after each dose; unsolicited adverse events and serious adverse events in the 28 days after each dose; and geometric mean titres (GMTs) of neutralising anti-Zika virus antibodies at 28 days after the second dose. Safety assessments were done in all participants who received at least one dose of vaccine. Immunogenicity assessments were in the per-protocol set, comprising all participants who received at least one dose of vaccine and provided valid serology results at baseline and at least one post-vaccination timepoint, with no major protocol violations. The trial is ongoing and is registered at (NCT03343626).
    FINDINGS: Between Nov 13, 2017, and Oct 24, 2018, 894 volunteers were screened and 271 enrolled (125 flavivirus-naive and 146 flavivirus-primed participants). All TAK-426 doses were well tolerated with no deaths, no vaccine-related serious adverse events, and similar rates of mainly mild to moderate adverse events. TAK-426 elicited dose-dependent increases in antibody GMTs in both flavivirus-naive and flavivirus-primed participants. 28 days after dose 2, plaque-reduction neutralisation test GMTs in flavivirus-naive participants were 1130 (95% CI 749-1703) in the 2 μg TAK-426 group, 1992 (1401-2833) in the 5 μg TAK-426 group, and 3690 (2677-5086) in the 10 μg TAK-426 group. In pairwise comparisons, responses after two vaccinations in the 10 μg group were significantly greater than in the 2 μg group (GMT ratio 3·27 [95% CI 1·98-5·39], p<0·0001) and the 5 μg group (GMT ratio 1·85 [1·15-2·98], p=0·012).
    INTERPRETATION: TAK-426 was well tolerated, with an acceptable safety profile, and was immunogenic in both flavivirus-naive and flavivirus-primed adults. Based on the safety and immunogenicity profiles of all TAK-426 doses assessed, the 10 μg TAK-426 dose was selected for further clinical development.
    FUNDING: Takeda Vaccines and the US Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority.
    TRANSLATION: For the Spanish translation of the abstract see Supplementary Materials section.
  19. Transbound Emerg Dis. 2021 May 16.
      The Amazon rainforest is considered the largest reservoir of culicids and arboviruses in the world. It has been under intense human-driven alteration, especially in the so-called "Arc of Deforestation", located in the Eastern and Southern regions. The emergence and transmission of infectious diseases are increasing, potentially due to land use change. We used landscape-scale mosquito surveillance across a forest fragmentation gradient in the Southern Amazon to evaluate the relationship between forest disturbance and the composition and structure of mosquito communities with a particular focus on the potential for arbovirus emergence in the region. Generalized Linear Models and Logistic Regression were used to associate the degree of landscape disturbance with arbovirus vectors richness and abundance. A total of 1,960 culicids, belonging to 50 species, were collected from 2015 to 2016. Among these species, 20 have been associated with the transmission of arboviruses. Our results show an association of land use, more specifically small size of forest remnants with more irregular shape and higher edge density, with the increase of arbovirus vectors richness and abundance. Six species of mosquito vectors exhibited a higher probability of occurrence in landscapes with medium or high degrees of disturbance. Our results indicate that land use change influences mosquito communities with potential implications for the emergence of arboviruses.
    Keywords:  Arc of deforestation; Biodiversity; Environmental disturbance; Mosquito ecology; Vector-borne diseases
  20. Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2021 May 17. pii: tpmd201179. [Epub ahead of print]
      Dengue, a mosquito-borne viral infection that affects millions around the world, poses a substantial economic burden in endemic countries. We conducted a prospective costing study in hospitalized pediatric dengue patients at the Lady Ridgeway Hospital for Children (LRHC), a public pediatric hospital in Colombo district, Sri Lanka, to assess household out-of-pocket and hospitalization costs of dengue in pediatric patients during peak dengue transmission season. Between August and October 2013, we recruited 216 hospitalized patients (aged 0-3 years, 27%; 4-7 years, 29%; 8-12 years, 42%) who were clinically or laboratory diagnosed with dengue. Using 2013 US dollars, household out-of-pocket spending, on average, was US$59 (SD 49) per episode and increased with disease severity (DF, US$52; DHF/DSS, US$78). Pediatric dengue patients received free-of-charge medical care during hospitalization at LRHC, and this places a high financial burden on hospitals. The direct medical cost of hospitalization was US$68.0 (SD 31.4) for DF episode, and US$122.7 (SD 65.2) for DHF/DSS episode. Yet a hospitalized dengue illness episode still accounted for 20% to 35% of household monthly income due to direct and indirect costs. Additionally, a majority of caregivers (70%) sought outpatient care before hospitalization, most of whom (81%) visited private health facilities. Our findings indicate that hospitalized pediatric dengue illness poses a nontrivial cost burden to households and healthcare systems, emphasizing the importance of preventing and controlling the transmission of dengue in endemic countries.